We are getting close to launching our Kickstarter (next week, don't tell anyone) - but Nick already told the people at BNR News Radio (The Netherlands) about our plans. If you want to listen to it, you can do below. Unfortunately it's a Dutch interview,
There are some of those things which you can't refuse. Being able to pitch at SXSW could be considered one of them. No, but seriously - we're not kidding. SXSW here we come, together with the New Dutch Wave and Rotterdam Partners.
So what are we going to tell the people in Austin? It's rather simple: you don't need batteries anymore. Our Light Energy technology will make sure that no IoT-nodes will ever need batteries again. And what is a better audience than the, *cough*, complete tech world combined that get together March 10-19? You can find us on the tradeshow and in the Holland House. And yes, we will do a demo and yes it works.
SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. The Startup Village track brings together startups, entrepreneurs, investors, and innovative tastemakers. Topics range from B2B, B2C, Bootstrapping, Business Strategy, Colleges, Entrepreneurs, Future of Money, Film, Music, Startups, and anything in-between.
Are you going to SXSW and want to meet us? We'd love to! Drop us a line
Weeks go by very fast while we are approaching the launch of our Kickstarter campaign next month. It might look like that the one thing we need to do is make a Kickstarter-video, but the last couple of months were full of preparation for this big moment for us. One of the coolest things we want to share with you today is about the collaboration we are going to do with the amazing folks @ The Internet Of Life.
TL;DR - We are going to put Light Energy GPS-trackers on rhinos to help preserving them.
Tim van Dam and his team made the Rhino Sanctuary in Mkomazi National Park (Tanzania) LoRa-connected last year. This to help preserve the rhino population, which went from thousands to just 24 in a few years (wow). This complete network works on solar energy and is completely sustainable, except for one part and that is the GPS-tracker that they attach to the rhinoceros which is battery powered. The battery accounts for about 98% of the device that is being drilled in the animals horn. Which is tricky, because you need to paralyze the rhino with heavy anesthesia to be able get near it and perform this procedure.
With Light Energy and some kick-ass engineering in house we are going to make something like a medical sticker which is a fraction of the size of the previous GPS-tracker for the rhinos. In addition to the previous ones is that these ones are meant to be placed on the back of the rhinoceros without having to paralyze them by their caretakers. This because Light Energy always works, there is no on- or off-switch. When there is light, it works. And another problem it fixes is getting them over the border. You might not know this, but transporting lithium-ion batteries overseas is a border-nightmare.
This was just a quick update, because -obviousley- we have a lot of work to do. A Kickstarter campaign and trying to help Tim save the worlds rhinoceros population. Let us get back to work and Tim will come back with a video next month straight out of Rwanda. Where they build yet another LoRa network to protect rhinos with help of Light Energy this time.
We are working hard towards our Kickstarter campaign and along the way we've been noticed by a few Dutch media outlets. We got covered by Bright, Numrush and Bits&Chips and next to that John and Nick got interviewed by the biggest financial newspaper and biggest free newspaper of The Netherlands: DFT (De Financiële Telegraaf) and Metro.
Where the Metro wrote 'Our mission is to eliminate the need for batteries', they were absolutely on point. The Tryst Light Energy modules are designed to work with and for every engineer that is creating IoT-products. We are going to launch three products through Kickstarter and we did not forget about engineers. There will be a PCB + Light Energy package for you.
John told DFT that the products are designed to be truly 'plug and play'. No hassle with putting up new wires or adding / replacing batteries all te time. No truly wireless. After it's set up, everybody can place it where ever they like. And since it's Light Energy powered, there isn't any maintenance that comes with it at all.
If you are a journalist and want to write about Tryst Energy, we have English press release and contact information on our Press page.
We got some questions on how Light Energy works. One of those questions is how we've managed our magic to make the promise of never having to use batteries again. It isn't a bad question, because if you look at solar power, that only works when you see some sun, right? Especially if you want some efficiency out of them.
In our team of engineers there is an actual rocket scientist. Daniël Bakker has a degree in Aerospace Engineering. So if someone is qualified to shine his light (pun intended) on this matter, he is your guy. So the question is how do we do it?
Daniël from now on: Well - actually it's the simplicity combined with advanced engineering and technology that does the trick. You start by using solely super low energy hardware like Bluetooth LE, LoRa as a basis. The Light Energy module is completely re-engineered with it's power management system to have ludicrous efficiency in low light conditions. You only need 4 hours of light at 200 lux (which is so little) to power the complete device for 24 hours.
Amount of lux you need
This is because we use a technology that is renown as a 'super capacitor' - which sounds really spectacular if you don't know what it is.
Where a battery charges slow, wear out after some charges - but is capable of storing large quantities of energy - the super capacitor is not. Where the super capacitor shines (again, pun intended) is at storing small amounts of energy super fast with little to no wear. You can use it for tens of thousands of cycles before it wears out. You can compare it to your RAM memory and the old fashioned hard disks in a certain way.
And it's just about a centimeter wide, so it doesn't take large amounts of space of your precious tech real estate. To sum up: we charge extremely efficient by harvesting the smallest amounts of light into energy and store it on something that isn't really a battery, but isn't a regular capacitor as well. It's actually best of both worlds.
So that's why we can say: batteries, not anymore.
For some time now everybody is talking about #IoT. The Internet of Things - but do we fully comprehend the vastness and the massive amount of products that we are looking at in potential? Estimations say around 50 billion IoT-connected devices in 2020. Some say less, but if only a fraction of those is battery powered... you get the point.
Since Tryst Energy is born within the walls of Tweetonig R&D we are already building IoT-solutions every day for clients like KPMG, PostNL and Dell. We also already see how many batteries we are using every month (hundreds). Of course we recycle them, but we have to do like 2, 3 containers every few months or so while testing. Imagine when the IoT-sensors are everywhere and need to be maintained if the battery runs low and how many batteries you'll have to recycle in 5 years or so. And as a last note: it's not easy to recycle batteries in an environmentally friendly way.
That's why everybody is doing research in the field of energy harvesting. We see great research with RF frequencies, kinetic power sources and so on - but all of those aren't ready today. Maybe in 20 years and than we'll be there. Solar Energy isn't that sexy, but after 20 years of research it is working. We've cracked it and made it possible to power IoT-devices with only 200 lux of light. Read more information on this page.