Jun 26, 2014—In its inaugural round, more than 475 organizations from 80 countries applied to the Powering Agriculture: An Energy Grand Challenge for Development initiative, which offered market-based, clean energy innovations for the agricultural sphere in developing countries. Each of the 11 winning organizations received awards of between $800,000 and $1.5 million to support great ideas from around the globe and offer farmers the solutions they need today and tomorrow.
Praveen Penmetsa of Motivo Engineering discusses their Hybrid Agriculture/Road Vehicles with Electricity Storage and Transformation (HARVEST)—that solves a wide range of agricultural mechanization and power-related problems. HARVEST is a multi-purpose platform that provides power for plowing, well-drilling, cold storage, and transporting crops to market. The system utilizes power from varied energy sources such as solar panels, wind turbines, micro-hydro turbines, or the grid to enable increased productivity all along the agriculture value chain. The entire system is operated at the community level, and facilitated by mobile communication technology for scheduling, billing, and payments.