Re: Let the Hype Begin!

Date: Wed Jan 10 2001 - 11:46:25 MST

Brian D Williams, <>, writes:
> This guy was the subject of an article in WIRED months ago,
> supposedly he was working on perfecting the Stirling (sp) engine
> for use as a portable power source.

BTW I found the original article forwarded here at They also have a message board where
people can put up their guesses, which is where I think the human
air-hockey puck idea came from.

The Wired article Brian mentions was

    Lately, Kamen has broadened his work beyond health care. He believes
    technology and ingenuity can solve all kinds of social ills - like
    pollution, limited access to electricity, and contaminated water
    in many third-world countries, where bacteria from human feces in
    drinking water is a leading cause of cholera. To help ameliorate
    the water problem, Deka's team of 170 engineers is working on a
    nonpolluting engine - funded by several million dollars of Kamen's
    own money - based on a concept first floated in the early 1800s but
    never realized.

    The device is called the Stirling engine; Kamen hopes it can be
    developed into an affordable, portable machine that will run a
    water purifier/power generator that could zap contaminated H20 with
    a UV laser to make it safe for drinking. "It can burn any fuel, and
    you can do all kinds of things with it," he says. "It might be very
    valuable in emerging economies, giving them access to electricity,
    even the Net."

This sounds like a likely guess given the size of the device described
in the article (fits in a duffle bag, roughly). However the Wired
article goes on to say,

    Another project, to be unveiled in the next year, will necessitate
    building "the largest company in New Hampshire," Kamen says with
    characteristic bravura. He's shy about details, except to say it
    involves a consumer device unrelated to health care and will require
    $100 million in financing. Among the investors: Kleiner Perkins.

The secrecy might point to this as IT rather than the Stirling engine,
although it could be misdirection, the factory actually being for
producing the engine.


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