|High quality, inexpensive solar-rechargeable LED light. Cosmos Ignite Innovations exists today, and continues to manufacture the Mighty Light. Thousands of Mighty Lights have found worldwide use, and has been sold to customers in India, Pakistan, the Philipines, Afghanistan, Panama, Guatemala, Rwanda, and South Africa.|
Darren Johnston (business), Sally Madsen (mechanical engineering), Matthew Scott (business), Cory Shaffhausen (product design)
The very first Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability class focused on affordable lighting. In poor rural settings, the only readily available lighting comes from kerosene lanterns, which are expensive to operate, making it difficult to justify lighting for “discretionary” activities like nighttime education. Furthermore, kerosene causes serious health problems, especially for children. The first class—which was at that time only one quarter long—charged all the students to address this problem. At the end of the quarter, the students had developed a functional prototype of a solar-rechargeable LED light.
The real challenge was carrying the project forward after the class ended.
Four class members decided that they weren’t willing to let the project fall by the wayside. Together, they formed Ignite Innovations, and began to pursue large-scale production of their invention: the MightyLight. They decided to begin in India, and they transitioned their operational activities to New Delhi. There, the team partnered with Cosmos Energy, completed more user testing, and set up a factory to begin manufacturing the improved design.
Cosmos Ignite Innovations exists today, and continues to manufacture the Mighty Light. Thousands of Mighty Lights have found worldwide use, and has been sold to customers in India, Pakistan, the Philipines, Afghanistan, Panama, Guatemala, Rwanda, and South Africa.