The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) has announced the regional winners of the 2023 ASME Innovation Showcase (ISHOW), the international accelerator of hardware-led social innovation.
Eight social ventures from throughout Africa and the Middle East presented their design prototypes at ASME ISHOW Kenya held virtually June 6-14. Three of these ventures emerged as regional ISHOW Kenya winners who will share $30,000 (USD) in seed grants and receive technical support to help bring their design innovations to market.
The 2023 ASME ISHOW Kenya winners are:
- Alcoford Corporation (Lomé, Togo) for its “Dehydrated Cost-Effective Ethanol Process” – an innovative process that converts cassava and post-harvest losses into ethanol through the intervention of multilevel distillation technology, helping women farmers earn better
- A-Lite Uganda Limited (Mbarara, Uganda) for its “A-Lite Vein Locator” – a non-invasive medical device that uses red light to provide easy access to patients’ veins
- ClearExhaust LLC (Doha, Qatar) for its “Smokeless Exhaust Tube” – a diesel engine filter capable of eliminating 100% of smoke emissions and reducing other greenhouse gases by ~30%.
The ISHOW awards ceremony featured a keynote address by Joseph Murabula, chief executive of the Kenya Climate Innovation Center based in Nairobi, as well as remarks from ASME Executive Director/CEO Tom Costabile.
“We are proud to offer a forum for engineering problem-solving that truly improves lives,” says Costabile. “We are continually impressed by the creative talent of ASME ISHOW participants, their focus on sustainable solutions, and their passion for helping underserved communities around the world.”
In addition to the three grand prize winners, the product with the most votes in social media for each regional ISHOW event is named the “Fan Favorite,” and receives $1,000 (USD). This prize is made possible and in memory of Byron G. Schieber Jr. M.S., PE, Professor Emeritus QCCNY, and Ruth L. Schieber.
The 2023 ISHOW Kenya “Fan Favorite” winner is Timao Group (Nairobi, Kenya) for its “PORESI Builder” innovation that produces polymer-sand building materials to address Africa’s climate change and housing crisis using a modular design that enables quick-build structures ranging from homes to shops and classrooms, providing affordable and durable building solutions.
ASME hosted ISHOW India in Bengaluru as part of ASME Innovation Weekend India in April and will host ISHOW USA for social ventures from the Americas, July 18-26.
The prestigious ASME ISHOW hardware accelerator is open to individuals and organizations taking physical products to market that will have a positive social and/or environmental impact and that improve the quality of life around the world. To date, ISHOW has enabled over 200 startups from more than 30 countries to solve critical quality-of-life challenges for vulnerable populations worldwide. ISHOW alumni have developed affordable devices to address issues including clean combustion, crop threshing, fetal health, food waste prevention, health diagnostics, safe drinking water, and many more that address the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.
ASME ISHOW annually matches 24 carefully selected innovators with appropriate experts to ensure that the proposed hardware solutions are technologically, environmentally, culturally, and financially sustainable.