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Viktor Johansson - Solo Sun Stove


Viktor Johansson - Solo Sun Stove #1


Describe the idea:

The solar energy that reaches earth exceeds human needs many times over. A vast free resource with the right tools in hand. My project is a cookstove that stores solar energy for use on demand, whether that is inside or after sundown. A flexible solution to create relief for people living in energy poverty and to enable empowerment, aspirations and dreams.


Who are you? Previous education/jobs/ experiences etc.

With inspiration from time spent in Asia, this project was born during my studies in Industrial Design at Lund University. This project has grown with the tools of the education to become a representation of me and my view on design, with emphasis on sustainability and democratic design.


What will you do during these three months? How will you spend the time?

I took the first prototype Thailand and it cooked me breakfast. I will now take everything that I´ve learned so far, in function and ergonomics, in tradition and culture, and put in to a new version. With this new version I will cook dinner. While the stove is charging I will work on a business plan.


What do you expect to achieve during Leapfrogs? 

With the support from Leapfrogs my ambition is to understand the concept in terms of viability in business, and be able to present a concept with design, engineering and business in balance.



Tell us what you have done on your projects so far during the Leapfrogs time:

This sunny weather has been ideal for testing and development. With the help of these conditions I have been working on ways to collect and concentrate incoming solar rays to a dedicated area, something that is essential to this project for both efficiency and handling, and I have gained some real insights. Parallel to testing I have been working on a business model with input from the last workshop.


Has everything gone according to the plan? Has anything unexpected occurred? Has something been easier/harder than expected? 

With sun every day, the development of the physical aspects of the product has progressed over expectation and I am close to a final concept. I have started to map competences and resources necessary for further development and also looking at production methods and costs. However, these have proven to be a bit difficult to estimate, which is making it a challenge to complete a satisfactory budget. 


What will you focus on during the remaining time? Will you follow your original plan or has anything changed along the way?

For the remaining time I will focus on developing the business plan and communication material of the concept. After the last workshop on customer segmentation I realized that a few changes can be made in the approach for a favourable outcome. I will continue the work of what needs to be included in further development for cost estimation of both the product, and the development of it, in order to complete a budget.


How did you experience the three months?

For me it has been great to have had time to really focus on the project without interference from other things. The first workshop was especially rewarding for me as it gave me insights that I could bring directly in to my project, and that really helped me forward.


What has been hardest/most enjoyable?

As I have been working on a cook stove that is heated up by the sun, I could not have asked for better weather. These conditions gave me time to experiment and test the stove in practice and find the most efficient way of doing this.

During the 3 months the physical design has changed slightly whereas customer segmentation and market approach has changed more. With these changes in customer approach I did find it hard to estimate and define costs of implementation and to satisfaction do the following budget work.


Did it go as expected? Will you continue working on your project in the future?

I think all in all I met my own expectations. I now have a final concept, that has been proven, and is ready to take to next stage, which I am likely to do!


What would you say is the most important lesson learnt while working on your project?

To thoroughly test the idea, by experiments and opinions, and to involve others in the development process to get good and accurate results.


Do you have any tips to other ”new” entrepreneurs?

Just do it! And do it with passion, although don’t let the passion take over, be critical and honest to the response of your project. And enjoy, don’t forget to have fun!