Nuarda Challenge Finalist 2017

May 25, 2017

Smart blox QUT bluebox Challenge Finalist 2018

Imagine what your life would be like without electricity. No electricity to power your home, work, no power in hospitals, no power for entertainment and more importantly no power for aid in emergencies. This is a reality for many people in disaster areas and even in remote areas of the world including isolated Australian regions. Smart Blox aims to bridge that gap in the accessibility of electricity the world over.

Q&A with Smart Blox founder Tim Larsen

Who is Smart Blox Australia?

Smart Blox is a startup lead by Tim Larsen, a QUT EMBA graduate, who with a diverse team, set to create positive world impacts via renewable energy solutions.

“My own background is in electrical, power, submarine and space systems engineering; as well as program management and business leadership” Tim said.

“The Smart Blox team is made of engineers, industrial designers and business innovators. We’re passionate about having an impact on the world, improving the lives of others and improving our natural environment. We saw a gap in the market for deployable renewable energy systems and have set about creating an eco-system of products”

What does Smart Blox do?

Smart Blox aims to create a suite of deployable energy products; the first of these products is Solar Blox.

Solar Blox is a micro-grid in a box. It has a built-in battery system, so it works day or night and has been specifically designed for remote regions, disaster relief scenarios and for developing countries.

“They are a replacement for petrol and diesel generators but require no fuel and no maintenance. So fundamentally – anyone could use it!” Tim said.

“We’ve combined everything that you need for a solar powered micro-grid into a ruggedized portable product that is so simple that anyone can use it without technical expertise.”

Solar Blox also has a feature to increase the scale of the grid by simply clicking in more Solar Blox.

“More Blox mean more power - they simply click together to scale up the grid. And most importantly, Solar Blox is just the beginning for us,”  Tim said.

Biggest challenge with starting up Smart Blox

As with many new inventions, Tim explains that part of the difficulty is there are no predecessors to learn from.

“When we started we thought we’d be able to re-use existing technology and components within our system. The further we progressed the more we had to design from scratch; and because we’re dealing with both hardware and software when we make a mistake, it takes a time and money to fix.”

Greatest Smart Blox success to date

“Put simply – making it work. Building our product and being able to deploy it and actually see it working!”

Support Smart Blox

Find out more about Smart Blox

Vote for Smart Blox to win the QUT bluebox Challenge Crowd Vote

Get your tickets to watch Smart Blox’s Tim Larsen pitch live at the QUT bluebox Challenge Gala

On the QUT bluebox challenge

“My experience with the QUT bluebox Challenge has been a wild ride of challenges and rewards.
I really enjoyed meeting the other teams and hearing about their passions and their unique solutions. Every team has an inspirational story to tell. The workshops have been exceptional for refining our stories and honing our communication strategies.”

On possibility of winning the Challenge

“Winning the QUT bluebox Challenge would take us to the next level. It would allow us to secure our high rate production supply chain and begin commercial sales in 2019.”

Advice to applicants next year

“Be prepared to sprint; there is no walking no jogging, it’s a full on sprint to the finish line.”

For more information