The Power of Red

In 2015, declared International Year of Light by UNESCO, there is much talk about photonics, that is to say technology connected with light. It is widely believed that photonics will assume the same importance and diffusion in this century as electronics did in the last century. One mainly thinks of lasers and their applications, photonic computers, the use of infrared technology for night vision, optical fibres for communication and such like.

However, little is said about the great energy of red and long waves. The various light waves arriving directly from the sun and stars or bouncing reflected or refracted off things around us are interpreted as colours by our brain and eyes. We also only see a small part of the light spectrum, namely light waves between 400 and 750 nanometers. From 0 to 400 nanometers, outside of the visible spectrum, are the ultraviolets, whilst the various shades of blue, that is to say “cold” light, can be found at between 400 and 500 nanometers.

Solar Pump NS1 uses warm light, long waves in shades of red of between 600 and 750 nanometers, but also the invisible area of infrareds, which goes well beyond 10,000 nanometers. That enormous band of invisible light contains all of the warmth needed by humanity and the other creatures living on the Earth. Even the background radiation generated at the start of the Universe is found in this part of the light spectrum, at the end of which are the radio waves. Red provides us with the energy needed to move our motors and much more could be done by simply collecting the long waves. Great is the power of red!

Nova Somor debutta al SIAM

Water for North Africa: Nova Somor at the SIAM in Morocco

Nova Somor will debut on the international markets on the tenth anniversary of the SIAM (Salon International de l’Agriculture au Maroc), the largest agricultural fair which will take place in Meknes in Morocco from April 28th to May 3rd, 2015. The flow of visitors expected, divided between insiders and potential direct customers, is estimated at hundreds of thousands of people.

All of northern Africa and beyond participates every year to the SIAM. The special features of our thermodynamic system are ideal for tropical and sub tropical areas such as North Africa, where electricity doesn’t reach everywhere and the problem of raising water from wells is strongly felt.

The almost constant presence of sunny weather and the intense irradiation help the powerful and constant operation of our Solar Pump, which will be a major competitor of the diesel or electrical systems powered by photovoltaic panels systems. The robustness of the machine, the simplicity of use and the practically absent maintenance, further increase its competitiveness compared with other systems with similar performances.

We will be happy to welcome anyone who would like to visit us at stand A80 at the Agro-Fournitures Pole.

Brindisi al lavoro ben fatto

A toast to a Job Well Done

The spare parts of the new lifting system of the Solar Pump NS1 finally arrived on Friday. We had them manufactured in Fermignano, near Urbino and the supplier was good and fast. Although it was already past 6 pm, no one wanted to wait until Monday to see if the lifting system worked properly and whether it is actually as awesome to see as it is in the drawings. Those who drew them have the satisfaction of seeing an idea developed on the computer become a piece of metal!

So Luca and Alessandro from the technical department and Roberto and Maurizio from the prototypes workshop immediately set to work in order to see how the system would look once assembled. I was supposed to leave, but I stayed to take pictures (on the other hand, I don’t know how to do anything more than tighten a nut!). The components were brought to the assembly table in the blink of an eye and then quickly assembled and bolted to the frame. Then the assembly was taken to another area of the prototypes workshop where the roll bond , the main component of the solar collector, was mounted.

Finally, we tested the new lifting system which replaces the previous one. Although the assembly lacks the motor, the polycarbonate tile, the housing and especially the painting, we already had an idea of how the Solar Pump was going to be once finished. The system is fine and works well, and once painted it will look awesome. So we profited by the occasion for a toast with a great passito sweet wine; a toast “to a job well done “!

Eliopompa NS1 versione "F"

Tthe most important thing is that we finally have some sun here in Rimini and so it is possible to carry out the tests and trials of our new Solar Pump NS1 model. Although the name is the same, this version of the system has reached letter “F“. Being able to experiment in realistic conditions and not by simulating the heat with an industrial air heater blower or other means is very important.

Nova Somor a Cantanzaro

Networks to Support Innovation

The two-day conference was extremely successful, both in terms of promoting Nova Somor, and in gathering information as well as creating new relationships. At Bologna’s CNR I was able to get to know some of the people who work for the network of services in support of innovative SMEs, which Emilia Romagna has been organising for years. The latest measures, such as the Starter fund and the Energy fund, will help many innovative start-ups to launch their activities. The programs within Horizon 2020 were also very interesting, in particular Nova Somor’s participation to “Innovation for small enterprises” could be very useful.

In Catanzaro, in an amazing and beautiful university campus nestled in a landscape of green hills, full of wind turbines and sheep grazing, I attended a meeting with a completely different agenda. I was able to meet and listen to professors of law, notaries, and experts in marketing and corporatists who discussed the evolution of the rules for crowdfunding. The testimony that I brought regarding Nova Somor’s experience was greatly appreciated and it proved, if ever it were needed, that practical experience is worth a thousand theories.

I found getting to know some details of the new laws that extend the ability to raise funds from the crowd also to innovative SMEs very valuable. The reports of the last frontiers of marketing based on “crowd sourcing” were also interesting, a new way to produce and sell. In short, catching 4 planes for one single trip may not be environmentally friendly, but it was very useful. The picture shows a “person of a certain weight” who significantly lowered the level of elegance of the speakers, but who returned the favour by bringing a contribution of practical experience in a field of purely theoretical relationships and contents.

Nova Somor, Workshop

Nova Somor flies from Bologna to Catanzaro

The success achieved with the equity crowdfunding operation, which finished at the end of 2014 on the Starsup portal, is also becoming a “cultural springboard” for a series of invitations for Nova Somor to testify in several different fields. The next events are scheduled for 12th and 13th March 2015.

On the 12th we will be present at the “Funding Opportunities in the Green sector” event, a workshop dedicated to funding opportunities in the field of Renewable Energy which Aster organises within the ENERGEIA project. This will be an opportunity for a dialogue concerning the main available European funding programs or those which will open soon, with specific action in the field of Renewable Energy, the Regional Energy Fund, the opportunities arising from debt financing and the two support programs to new ideas in the Green sector brought by Climate KIC.

Once the work in Romagna is over, we will fly directly to Catanzaro in Calabria in order to attend another event to which we have been invited for the morning of the 13th. This is the conference ” LA FOLLA E L’IMPRESA (CROWD AND BUSINESS)”, a dialogue between jurists and corporatists concerning the new dynamics of the co-creation of value and business financing.

The conference will take place at the Campus “Salvatore Venuta” of the University “Magna Graecia” of Catanzaro, Department of Law, History, Economics and Social Sciences and is sponsored by the Notary Committee for the Calabria region. Cultural activities are very important for Nova Somor and these frequent invitations to conferences, events and workshops help us to spread our ideas and thus give our contribution to change and improvement in respect of the current economic and social model.

Nova Somor, Continua lo Sviluppo

Nova Somor Continues its Development Path Without Stopping

Nova Somor continues its development as planned. After the start-up of the company on July 15th, 2014, we were registered in the special register of companies as an innovative start-up on 10th September. We then made our “society debut” first in academia at the Musil of Brescia on 10th October and then on the market with the Ecomondo fair in Rimini on 8th November. We then faced the challenging task of equity crowd funding that was successfully completed on 31st December.

As well as financing our development, we acquired a new partner who is invaluable for his approach in doing business, very similar to that of the founding partners, and for his expertise in industrial fields. Now we are working on the full development of our solar pump and its industrialisation: we think we are going to have to produce a lot of them!

We are taking on our first employees and setting up a nice work team. Our next objective, to which we are very committed, is to join the great SIAM agricultural fair which will take place in Morocco from April 29th to May 3rd. We are also organising a sales network and creating collaborations: anyone interested in working with our company, please contact us!

Nova Somor, Nuove Assunzioni

The First Nova Somor Recruitment

Creating new jobs is certainly one of Nova Somor’s objectives. To be able to offer people employment opportunities is not just a way of doing business for us, but also one of the goals we set ourselves when we started our innovative start-up. Although for reasons of efficiency and rapidity of action we chose to be a for-profit company, we fit into what is often called “social business”. This is why when choosing technological applications, we designed a product of reduced dimensions and, by and large, altogether easy to build. And we designed it without pushing too much towards automation because we want it to still remain a craftsman’s object, even within an industrial context.

Some components will certainly be built by machines, both for technology and for cost reasons, but in any case the solar pump as a whole will be assembled by people and not by robots. As an innovative start-up we enjoy certain benefits thanks to Italian laws and it is in Italy that we want to create jobs. We have decided to stay and pay taxes in this country. That said, the expansion policies of Nova Somor, if the company enjoys the success that we expect, will only be based on exports of made in Italy products up to a certain point. We think that moving tons of metal from one continent to another is neither ecological nor in the end, even ethical.

So if our products should be welcomed in America and South American, in Australia rather than in India, then we will produce on-site, as is stated in our business plan. Even the first series of solar pumps will be produced by out sourcing, in Italy therefore, but externally to Nova Somor. Then, presumably in the second half of 2015, we will begin to hire personnel for production. Until that time, we are pleased to announce the creation of the first jobs for the technical office and prototype workshop. We are in fact hiring two people full-time and one part time with an indefinite term work contract in Rimini.

This is highly qualified staff, experienced in design, prototyping and testing. One of the three people will be appointed from the beginning to the after sales service which is of paramount importance for customer satisfaction and essential when making technology and innovative products such as Nova Somor does. Another specialised figure works part time indirectly for us for the administrative aspects and in the meantime we are working at creating a sales network in Italy and abroad. It may seem little, but we consider it an important beginning.

Equity Crowdfunding

The Equity Crowd-funding operation of Nova Somor has been completed

“Curti Costruzioni Meccaniche Spa” in Castel Bolognese is the “professional” prestige investor who puts the seal on the equity crowd funding operation organised by StarsUp for Nova Somor. The news had leaked on December 20th in Lugo di Romagna during the event “Financing innovation with banks and beyond” organised by the business accelerator LugoNextLab Srl, during which Alessandro Curti, patron of the group, expressed his appreciation for the project, emphasizing how mature businesses can and should play a role in boosting the birth and development of innovation resulting from Italian talent.

Previously Alessandro Di Maiuta, owner of Plast Project, had underwritten 95% of the capital provided. His skills as an entrepreneur in the field of irrigation and spraying will certainly give a major contribution to the development of Nova Somor. The completion of the 250 thousand euro equity crowd funding campaign which ended on December 31st, just 50 days after its launch, is a very good result. In addition there was also a decent “over funding”; i.e. a dozen people who failed to invest as they would have liked, which is a credit to the Project.

Carlo Piras, the person responsible for PR with investors in StarsUp, comments, “every day we learn more about the needs of users and we believe that with a few regulatory adjustments ECF could soon get up to speed thereby becoming a useful instrument of economic policy for the country . We think that large Italian companies are approaching this instrument with increasing interest and conviction, and this is very important because not only does it bring the provision of capital, but also managerial experience and relationship networks which are fundamental elements for new start-ups”.

Giordano Mancini of Nova Somor declared:

“We have planned since the beginning of our start-up to use the tool of equity crowd funding, as we consider it akin to our way of business thinking. Today we are happy to be able to communicate the positive closing of our operation with StarsUp, hoping it will serve as an example and an encouragement to using the ECF instrument by other Italian start-up companies”.

horizon 2020-webinar

#Webinar: Horizon 2020

The new European Community framework program, Horizon 2020, launched in January 2014, will regulate EU funding for the next seven years. There are many novelties, especially for small and medium enterprises. There are new complex and interesting guidelines on the basis of which loans will be dispensed.

This is a delicate and articulated subject which cannot be improvised. We interviewed Mr Paolo Neri from Warrant Group srl, the largest and most important Italian company, whose 140 employees deal with public financing to businesses.

Again there are many questions concerning the difficulties that domestic companies experience in order to access European funds and regarding the behaviour of politicians and lobby groups in this area.

ecodesign webinar

#Webinar: Eco-design Today

Eco-design is the basis for sustainable industrial production and therefore is also the basis of bio-economy. 80% of the impact on the environment is generated during the design phase and generally these errors cannot be corrected downstream.

For this workshop we therefore interviewed one of the leading national experts on the subject: Professor Lucia Pietroni, associate professor in industrial design at the University of Camerino, where every year the oldest master of eco-design of Italy is held, and president of the EcodesignLab, the first Italian university spin-off which deals with eco-design topics.

As always happens in our seminars, the theme is thoroughly discussed and there are concrete industrial examples providing inspiration. The interview also touched on “thorny” topics regarding the typical difficulties experienced in collaborations between universities and companies.