India: 14-year-old girl wants to replace coal-fired “hanger carts” with solar-powered cargo bikes

Sometimes you don’t have to be loaded with diplomas to create a revolutionary invention. A 14 year old Indian girl Tell Vinisha Umashankar, knows the challenges of global warming for his country. Let’s not forget that loud an IQAir reportIndia, along with its neighbors Bangladesh and Pakistan, is one of the most polluted countries in the world.

This young girl became pregnant in Tiruvannamalai, a small town in the state of Tamil Nadu in southern India an ingenious alternative to using coal in the ironing trolley. Ironing carts are a common practice in India, they roam the streets ironing the laundry of workers or families … but they run on coal …

Umashankar decided to run them on solar energy. And she will represent her country in the first Earthshot Prize, a £ 1 million ($ 1.3 million) prize launched by Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.

10 million ironing trolleys in India!

the Prix ​​Earthshot Prize (Let’s Fix the Earth) awards the best ecological innovations of the next 10 years. 50 solutions to the world’s biggest problems are selected. And the project ofUmashankar is part of. And it is the climate emergency in his country that gave him the idea of ​​his invention.

Ironing carts are in the millions in India and each of them uses approximately 11 pounds of coal a day… The coal fumes therefore pollute the air in this country even more, which is already almost breathless! After searching the Internet, the girl realized the dangers of ironing carts. She has made it her business to find a solution for the use of coal!

Illustrative photo. Credit: Shutterstock / ozerkizildag

The invention ofUmashankar

After seven months of research, the young Indian woman offered her alternative to charcoal. The roof of the car has a solar panel that supplies the iron with electricity. The excess energy is stored in a battery. This enables the ironing trolley to be used even after dark.

In 2019 she won the state prize in a design competition and can therefore have her invention patented. She hopes that the production of her ecological trolleys can start as early as 2022. If she wins the EarthShot Prize, production could undoubtedly start a little earlier!

India: A 14 year old girl replaces them "Ironing trolley" Charcoal with solar cargo bikes
Photo credit: Earthshot Prize & Vinisha Umashankar

Other projects in progress!

This 14-year-old girl, who has been passionate about science since her parents gave her an encyclopedia when she was 5, is also working on other projects. and his projects all aim to solve environmental problems… She explains : “We’re trying to restore our planet in less than a century, and that’s not a lot of time compared to the time it took us to get to this point.”. We hope that this young girl with a bright future will win the coveted award …

What is the EarthShot Prize?

This award presented by Prince William revolves around five main lines:

  • Protect and restore nature
  • Purify our air
  • Liven up our oceans
  • Build a world without waste
  • Fix our climate

A nice program to encourage inventors young and old to find solutions for our planet … Judgment of October 17th for Umashankar !