Solar tech & financial inclusion on the blockchain

BitLumens brings solar power to people living in rural areas who dont have access to the power grid. Our device can be paid in installments.

Veronica
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Project Ends on November 29, 2019

Project Description

Over a billion people remain locked out of the banking system, due to the lack of legal identification. According to the World Energy Outlook, 1.2 billion people don’t have access to electricity while many more have intermittent electricity. BitLumens provides access to clean energy while providing users with a credit score and a certification stating they had paid for their solar device. The latter is composed of a solar panel, a battery and efficient appliances. Our solar technology has sensors which collect data related to generation and consumption.

Our device can be paid in installments but in order to keep our credit risk on track we train agents to collect the know your customer (KYC) information and power usage to develop a credit score for each user. All transactions are managed through the blockchain, meaning our solar technology can be locked and unlocked remotely. This is perfect to provide transparency of remittances and of data. We combine energy access with financial inclusion using the blockchain.

Our current solution is located in Guatemala. We chose Latin America, because there are more than 31 million people living in rural areas in Latin America depending on inefficient and hazardous fuels such as wood, kerosene, plastic and candles. A single kerosene lamp emits over 100 kg of CO2 per year when used four hr/d Customers are approached by Bitlumens agents who are trained villagers and install the solar home systems and collect data using our software.

Our software can be found here:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bitlumens&hl=en
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bitlumens.wallet
Our pilot
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zY6FK_4HA3A

 

Our Team

Veronica Garcia, CEO/Founder: Veronica Garcia was an investment consultant at Credit Suisse and UBS for Latin American Asset Managers. After finishing her graduate studies at the ETH in Zurich she joined IBM Research Lab. She also worked as a consultant for the World Bank, IADB and Castalia. Her research focused on renewable technologies and on quantifying investment needs to reach the country targets for renewable power generation. In 2017 she founded BitLumens which brings solar power and water to rural areas in developing countries using Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain technology.

Daniel Heller, CIO: Daniel was the head of financial stability and payment system oversight at the Swiss National Bank, head of the Secretariat of the Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems at the Bank for International Settlements, and executive director for Switzerland, Poland, Serbia, Azerbaijan, and four Central Asian republics at the International Monetary Fund. He received his PhD from the University of Bern and was a research fellow at Stanford University. His academic publications are on optimal design of bond auctions, demand for central bank money, and collateral requirements for over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives clearing. In 2017 he was a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington DC, where his research focused on the impact of emerging digital technologies such as blockchain on the financial sector, financial stability, and central banking.    

Rekha Jain: Backend Developer. Rekha is a senior Java/J2EE developer, having rich experience developing cloud ready scalable applications. She is an analytical thinker that resolves on going issues or defects, often called upon to consult on problem that have eluded resolutions by others.

Yash Patel, Frontend Developer: Yash is working as a Software Engineer at Onata. Expertise in in levering front-end technologies to develop high end web application using Angular, Bootstrap, HTML5 and React JS. Fundamental mastery of the AWS cloud computing platform, and its many dimensions of scalability - including but not limited to: VPC (Virtual Private Cloud), EC2, Load-balancing with ELB, Cloud Formation, Cloud Watch, the AWS API and different toolkits for instrumenting it.

Thomas Kansy, Carbon Credit Advisor: Thomas is an experienced quantitative modeler and designs and carries out complex research on the relationship of asset values and regulation. Thomas has worked with a broad portfolio of public and private clients, including multinational energy companies, multi-lateral organisations such as the OECD and World Bank, governments across the world, and the European Commission.

Saiprasad V. Bhosle, Project Manager: Sai has been associated with Futran I.T solutions as Market analysts. For Bitlumens he brings 6 years of experience in project management. With strong academic background in masters in business administration and information system he as supported various startup in strategizing their market analysis with the help of various research and analytics methods. Being Certified I.T project manager and Business process management he created his own identity in managing project right from scheduling to delivery. He as been actively involved in evolving various project both in India and United States.

Megan Kerins, is a civil engineer with a focus on emerging economies. She holds a Masters in Civil Engineering from Stanford University and has worked for various Bay Area solar companies, including overseeing a national solar quality assurance program with Sunrun.

 

Why we are seeking funding?

We are seeking funding to finalize our hardware and software. We will keep all of our supporters up to date on all developments. 

Updates

The Project FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is Bitlumens?

Bitlumens brings electricity and water from renewable sources using Internet of Things (IoT) and the blockchain technology to women in rural villages in Latin America. Thanks to solar energy and our technology, people can move away from candles and kerosene lamps and use clean power electricity. They will also gain access to mobile communication and even water their crops! Women acquire our hardware through a leasing agreement. This allows them to build a credit score leading to financial inclusion and poverty alleviation. We also quantify carbon mitigation and particle matter reduction allowing each households to become carbon credit issuers.

Where is Bitlumens based?

Bitlumens is incorporated in Zug, Switzerland. Most team members are also based in Switzerland. We plan to further expand to other regions proficient in blockchain technology.

 

How is Bitlumens decentralizing the carbon and black carbon credit market?

Globally, burning kerosene for lighting generated 240 million tons of CO2 equivalent a year, around 0.5% of global emissions. In fact, just kerosene lamps replaced in Africa and Asia with solar panels saved 1.4 million tons of CO2 equivalent in 2014 alone.

Bitlumens customers create valuable carbon assets that can be sold to companies and/or carbon markets.

Why rural communities?

Most rural communities have unreliable access to power and water. These communities depend on inefficient and hazardous fuels such as biomass, kerosene, plastic, battery torches and candles. Fuels and its combustion process release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Bitlumens is brining clean technologies to areas where new infrastructure is needed to comply with the 2ºC target from the Paris Agreement.

Who owns the data from the sensors?

Our clients own their data. These data can be sold to the government or to development banks. The data runs in a private blockchain and is connected to our sensors.

 

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Just Because I Care

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