Jessica Matthews, a co-creator of the energy-producing soccer ball, SOccket, visited my school today, taking the place by storm with her stories and engaging presentation.
A collaborative, 21st Century learning team working together for an undergraduate college class project, envisioned a soccer ball that might create clean energy as it moved around, while still being a ball for playing soccer. Their SOccket invention is astonishing and inspiring, creating enough energy to plug in a lamp or charge a mobile phone. Now, several years later, two members of the team have become social entrepreneurs, and SOccket is in production.
This CBS This Morning report gives lots more background. Two of the students, Jessica and her former classmate Julia Silverman, formed a start-up company, UnCharted Play and you can watch company’s introductory video, with an intro by Bill Clinton.
Jessica is quick to point out that none of the people on their team were science majors, and that the engineering problems they encountered generally required that they use their high school physics knowledge. When they needed help the team found that Wikipedia led them to almost any information they were seeking.
The first generation of the SOccket is in production, to be distributed through non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in African and South American countries. Later this year the SOccket ball should go on sale.
An inspiring day!
Other SOccket Resources
- SOccket: a Power Plant in a Soccer Ball – GeekBeat
- A Soccer Ball that Gives You Energy — Really (Includes short VIDEO) – Voice of America
- Bright Idea: Powering Lights Through Soccer – ESPN
- SOccket Inventors: Being Young and Stubborn Helps Innovation – (includes short VIDEO) – Daily Beast
- Clinton Global Initiative Opening Plenary Session – Jessica’s presentation begins with Clinton’s intro around 20 minutes -30 seconds. The entire panel, beginning with the founder of YouTube, is engaging.
- Young Women Release Alternative Energy Soccer Ball – PR Web