“Here’s a project by some high school students.”
Pandemic regulations bring one back to thoughts of exploring possibilities, working along old tracks of innovation during the past two years. Friends’ trust helped bridge gaps across barriers and challenges that made things more feasible in more terms.
Designing a utility model (UM) for home- or school-based mini-power generation somehow benefitted a few senior high school students literally seeking refuge from sectional brownouts that widely interrupted the first weeks of the country’s first online classes in early 2020.
The UM is made up of a 10KW dynamo-type generator; a driving DC motor; a 54v 100 Amp alternator and a 48v battery-pack system—all harmonized into a network of DC meshes and AC loops on calculated and crafted mechanical and electrical links. This, I call the Tri-Mode Power Generation (T-MPG) System-UM.
The concept of the T-MPG System-UM is shared with appropriate government agencies in letters sent to an attached agency to the Department of Science and Technology (DoST) in Metro Manila in search of collaborative partners in applied research. The Ministry of Science and Technology, DoST’s BARMM counterpart, requires me to collaborate with any government academic institution to come up with an applied research and development (R&D) output to complement my T-MPG UM System innovation. However, our local academic institutions are hardly prepared to veer time off their scholars’ regular programs and activities—understandably, into some gatecrashing project not prior envisioned in terms of policy-formulation and planning in previous programs preparation.
But with relevant policies hardly stretched to collaboration with inventors and innovators, the MoST-BARMM is unable to respond to official requests for a formal dialogue window between them as the party of experts and a party of lay innovators willing to devote more time working along navigable possibilities towards developing renewable energy options, which the region needs most at this point in time.
Moving forward, objectives are made clear that the T-MPG UM System is not about generation of free household electricity. Rather, it somehow has helped (learning) cope with emergency situations of sectional blackouts. And as a “miniature” system, the device is more intended to help young people understand and get familiarized with the industry of power generation. Thus, it can be a practical learning tool at laboratory works in electromagnetic physics for high school students in remote (BARMM) areas hardly exposed to power energy facilities and other industries. Thereby, it can effectively develop support to the social rehabilitation along the Normalization Track of the 2014 Comprehensive (Peace) Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB). Call it “peace science.” Didn’t the Nobel Peace Prize start with Science?
There is this anecdote that in Japan electronic toys and gadgets are assembled by children. This is probably because Japan has succeeded in narrowing the “gap” between classroom-based learning and the images of the real thing in some fashion made attractive to young learners.
In dialogues at government offices, we’d make it a point that effective conflict management has its best historical model in the oldest and longest human experience at centuries of devastating wars (between kingdoms and imperial nations) that ended in Europe’s rise to Renaissance of the Golden Age of Science and Mathematics.
In modern-day BARMM, any of several R&D programs may suit the T-MPG UM System but will also be capped by limitations in terms of policies. MoST-BARMM integrates the institutional functions of the DOST and auxiliary offices at regional level, albeit only into a “Harmonized R&D Agenda (2021 – 2025), thus far. The region’s R&D mandates, however, are designated to a small office “section.”
There’s relatively much leniency on related policies in the national government which opens applied research to participation by private companies. My latest feedback is that on the very first day my letter was received, the office-addressee was already “looking into it especially if ____can assist.”
Taking up the T-MPG UM System with Moro academics back home, one broadly understood the predicament. Another asked if one was open to giving up the intellectual credit to an institution that may host an applied research undertaking.
It would have been easier to decide if things were not prior communicated with the Bureau of Patents of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL). Recommendations for the second Formality Examination Report (FER) have been complied with for the Bureau of Patents.
Indeed, a “gap” widens between inventors or innovators on one side and the R&D science experts on the other hand. Workable policies should be harmonizing the two parties in some collaborative forum similar to the Philippine Inventors Commission, created by Republic Act 3850 during the First Macapagal Administration in 1964.
Nash B. Maulana is a journalist by profession. Because of his early environment, a small industry managed by his parents, he studied engineering but shifted to journalism which he finished at PUP Manila.