I woke up Friday morning thinking about preparing for a giant storm to hit Seattle while also planning to hand deliver a few of my wind prototypes to a large ballroom at the University of Washington for a career day event. They were expecting two to three hundred students to show up with resumes in hand, however I was told that more than 500 students came through to apply for summer internships at almost two dozen companies.
I was honored to be in the presence of recruiters from large companies such as Boeing, Microsoft, and the US Navy, but even more honored to be handed almost a hundred resumes from some of the most ambitious electrical and aeronautical engineering students I've ever met. Most of them already studied my website and had some great questions thought up inquiring about me and the future of Pterofin, Inc.
Needless to say I had a few incredible discussions with some very eager students who wanted to spend their time interning and helping develop Pterofin technology. Some of them were extremely passionate about the usefulness of the technology which helps deliver clean drinking water to populations who fight that battle day after day and year after year. Other students were very animated and passionate about the physics behind Pterofin technology, and how they'd absolutely love to be a part of my team doing R&D.
I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am about meeting some of the future leaders in technology, taking such an active interest in clean energy and playing their part to not only help save our environment, but also save lives on a global scale. I'd like to think they're all keeping their fingers crossed and hoping I'll get back to them before the fist day of their summer vacation, as I think that's how long it might take me to go through the stack of resumes and make my decision.
The process of seeking a patent is anything but quick. The wheels of government turn slowly, if it all, and the patent process is no different.
We've hoped that the path to earning a patent award of our Pterofin designs would be quicker, but it's been a time and resource-consuming process of back and forth between us, our patent attorneys and and the US Patent Office. Fortunately, a just-announced program will hopefully finally help us achieve that goal.
The government recently debuted a pilot program called P3. While the nomenclature may not be inspired, program itself is in that it allows entrepreneurs a little more leeway in navigating the patent process. It gives us an avenue where we can actually interact in real-time with officials, answer their questions, have our own questions answered, and hopefully clear any hurdles and get that final approval we've been seeking for so long.
We appreciate the supporters who have joined us on the journey as we try to bring a clean energy source to everyone. As we continue to pay the ever-mounting legal fees that this process generates, we ask that you share our plans with other like-minded individuals who believe in simple solutions to help people and the planet. Together we can change the world.
Ted and TedX talks are renowned for bringing in some of the best minds in the world to discuss all sorts of topics that are life and world changing. This year's TedX San Juan Island event is no different, as some fantastic speakers will gather September 17 to discus quality of life.
Quality of life is a topic at the forefront of what we do, as the technology we're working on developing is intended to improve life for people throughout the world. From someone in American looking to bolster their self sufficiency to someone in the developing world trying to gain access to clean water, our simple designs are meant to make life better.
One of the speakers is our own Jarrod Lyman, a recent addition to the Pterofin team who is helping with social media. We don't want to spoil the speech for you, but his talk will focus on many issues that we are striving to address.
One of the most difficult parts of creating a new company is spreading the word about your vision and getting others to follow along on that journey. Wallace has an inspiring vision, but Pterofin isn't the vision, it's the vehicle that drives us to the scenic viewpoint that overlooks that vision: a world where everyone has access to clean water and efficiently generated electricity. The TedX event will allow us to bring more people along on that trip.
In October of 2015 I was approached by a team of students from UC Berkeley who were working on an oscillating wind power device that would be sited in Marin County, California. After performing some background research in the field they found my company, Pterofin, Inc., and were highly impressed with the work I've done, saying it was, "particularly inspiring and actually aligns with some of the preliminary designs [they] have been exploring". They said they'd love to learn more about my products and look for any kind of opportunity to collaborate in scaling up my technology and collect data on it's efficiency. Needless to say, I was flattered and honored to work with such an eager and distinguished group of students who were not only impressed with the work I've done, but also excited about exploring my technology and an alternative source of renewable energy.
After signing a NDA and creating a Memorandum of Understanding that we all agreed upon, I began advising the group of students who later mentioned, "The establishment of collaborating with Wallace Kempkey, founder of Pterofin, was instrumental in the advancement of our project from a stage with rough prototypes of multiple concepts to one with a higher-fidelity functional prototype of a single concept." I told them about the dozens of prototypes I've made and tested in the wind and water, and everything I learned from observing and tweaking them. One of the students immediately caught a flight up to Seattle to meet me and have me talk through a prototype they were particularly interested in replicating. I exchanged dozens of emails and spent many hours over the phone working out solutions for designing, building and testing their final project.
Last week the student team shared all of the information they had accumulated from their research and invited me to continue working with next years students who will be picking up where they left off. One of the students mentioned in their final paper, "If, after this review and exploration, the team decides to continue working on the technology we developed with the help of Wallace from Pterofin, then I suggest they continue optimizing the device for electricity generation."
Meeting the energy demands of our future generations is going to be a monumental challenge and can dramatically improve the quality of life of potentially billions of people. Whether it's pumping clean drinking water to the surface or powering lights and refrigerating food or vaccinations, human kind could benefit from our research and knowledge in understanding the forces of our natural environment. Through knowledge we can adapt, persevere and flourish as a species on this gift to humankind we call Earth.
Imagine a world where there is no bill for electricity.
Instead a fin dips water or a wing tips wind to turn the earth's natural currents into power to pump water and provide electricity for your home.
Click image to watch video of latest prototypes!
What it Takes to Make It
To make it in the world of renewable energy technology, it isn't just about hard work, engineering design, and testing the prototypes you create. It's also about protecting your idea, your business, and securing investment.
In August of last year Pterofin filed an application for a non-provisional patent and qualified for a green fast-track patent under President Obama's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Pterofin's patent is expected in 2013. And this month, Pterofin took another step forward to secure its business future.
Pterofin is now officially incorporated which provides the company with financial and legal protections to enter a new phase of growth. The journey to success and design manufacture is that much closer.
Are you with us?
Pterofin is ramping up for the Northwest Regional Finals of the Clean Tech Open taking place this October. For the taking is $250K, and the Pterofin team is focused and determined.
Pterofin is also at a critical crossroad, requiring us to reach out and facilitate the investment required to continue pursuit of a patent.
Pterofin's goal is to raise $200K by September. This fundraising will secure the software we need to validate the technology's design in addition to payment to lawyers pushing our patent paperwork through the US Patent Office.
Wally, CEO of Pterofin, spent this summer touring the Pacific NW and California, meeting with Hong Kong Trade Groups, US trade leaders, and National Laboratories. He is exploring opportunity in Asia and in touch with many representatives that can protect a venture into global markets.
Clinton, COO of Pterofin, is developing potential partnerships with distribution leaders in Africa, a continent with strong appetite for energy.
Latest in Pterofin design
Since testing the Pterofin prototype this past March at the Kirsten Wind Tunnel and Water Tunnel at University of Washington, the team has been fine-tuning and fast-tracking design validations, pushing the technology to the limit.
The Pterofin prototype is inspired by natural movements in the flapping of a bird's wing. The biomimicry evident in the design, takes a natural approach to water pump technology. Opportunities for deployment include regions of the world where the wind speed is low and water resources cannot be piped.
Share your thoughts and drop Pterofin a note!
Or stay connected and like us on Facebook!