Project Capricorn – Clean Water and Renewable Energy | Sanitation Hackathon

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Project Capricorn – Clean Water and Renewable Energy

Short Description 

Mobile off-grid hybrid renewable energy production and water purification container plant for crisis management opeations.

Project Description 

Local off-grid and grid-connected energy production and water purification service station for Crisis Management & Localized Sustainability Operations:

Concept created by Brand Station for Project Capricorn/Sanitation Hackathlon, developed by Project Capricorn.

TEAM: Hackathlon Team: Project Capricorn:

Petri Saarinen, Concept founder, Developer. Espoo, Finland. Skills: Concept developer, Project leader, Technology sourcing, Proof-of-concept, Energy systems, etc.

Franco F. Yanine, Scientist, PhD, Developer. Waterloo, Canada. Skills: Concept developer, CHP and Water infrastructure development, Technology/Science, Sourcing, Proof-of-concept, etc.

Ariel Lobos, Engineering, Developer. Valparaiso, Chile. Skills: Concept engineering and architecture development, Technology configuration, automation, Energy and Water systems, etc.

Name Lastname, Autocad & Grafical designer. Helsinki, Finland. Skills: Autocad designer, Grafical design, Concept visualization, etc.

Project Capricorn emerges as an international, pluralized initiative, which is transversal in nature and scope focusing on several aspects of Localized sustainability and Crisis management operation. It seeks to focus chiefly on opportunities that arise from dire needs and concerns in the Mining sector, particularly in countries like Chile. The largest Mining industry projects are led and operated from the Tropic of Capricorn line, thus the project takes its name from this fact to remind us how important this region is to the economy and sustainability of the population which depend on Mining industry activities. The Mining industry represents one of the mayor industries in the world and is omnipresent in the economies of developing countries like Chile, Peru, Bolivia, and others. Mining is also very dependent on water, and not just any water, but clean water that is being used for both human and industrial use at the same time, causing major concern about water resources depletion. Australia, Brazil, Chile, South-Africa, Namibia represent some of the mayor players in the industry. Mining companies from Australia, Chile, China, Brazil, Finland, USA, and so on, operate in these regions and use local resouces such as energy and water for mining purposes. Heavy use of water in the mining industry represent a great threat and challenge for the use of water resoures in a sustainable way. Therefore, creating biomining technologies, echological issues such as local energy production by means of hybrid minigrids operating either as stand-alone or grid-connected electric power plants, water usage, water recycling, water desalination, and also sanitation issues are topics which need to be addressed in every one of these areas and projects. But the Challenge lies also in the opportunity to adequately fund this initiative and to create wealth and properity from it by fostering and envigorating local business  opportunities and jobs creation for the communities in the regions. In this wasy Project Capricorn seeks to develop new and innovative ways to manage the limited Water resouces in particular. Mining industry can bring essential funding to not only the technologies we develop for the Mining industry, but also for any rural and underdeveloped area in the world.


Movable/mobile off-grid and grid-connected hybrid energy systems production and water purification container plant/station for crisis management opeations and localized sustainability in remote, rural and outback locations.(Rapid Deployment CHP & Water Plant Container, CHPWp) CHPWp comes in modular standardized containers, ready to deliver to crisis and natural disaster areas all over the world.

System uses local renewable energy sources (RES) for the energy production. Basic station/plant has PV modules, Wind turbines and Energy storage. Thus, the system is equipped with battery storage units, to store energy, which will be used at night time and on time with high electricity demand. System provides electricity to rescue hospital, rescue camp area lighting, communitation systems, one single power system. The system’s heat production plant provides necessary heat for rescue hospitals and other santitation needs. Heat power is used for creating potable water, hot water, steam and heat for e.g. hospital sterilization needs, etc.

System need to utilize ground water, and possibly re-water; rain water, grey water, etc. The CHPWp system focus is to be easy to opearate, with low maintenance, and low technical staff. System is to have Mobile/GPRS/Internet access to maintain and remotely monitor and operate the system as well.

Challanges ahead and current status quo:

The operating focus of International crisis intervention units is on crises, and not focusing on the development and support of building infrastructure that support sustainable development at the time of crisis management. Local self-sufficiency, localized sustainability efforts management which support the relocation and region’s development and growth after the crisis is also part of the work scope but comes immediately after the crisis intervention and successful solution. One of the challenges of all crises is the local energy and water production and supply.

Project Capricorn – Crisis management project – the CHPWp unit is uniquely developed for accurate production and supply of these vital resources (heat/power/cooling/water) so that different functions can be carried out efficiently. The crisis opration needs electricity/heat/cooling/water for field hospital, other operational units and basic infrastructure. In addition, camps need general lighting, so that camps can operate 24/7 and so that the area can be safe and productive. Also, clean water operations need electricity, so that the filtering systems can operate effectively. Communications and control systems need also 24/7 electricity. In addition, the need for small aircraft runway lighting can be safely managed with the centralized power generation system.

Today, existing crisis management and infrastructure are built from independent, separate and often conflicting solutions to produce electricity, heat and water supply. Currently all solutions work wiht their own energy solutions using mainly fossile diesel-based power supply. Current equipment solutions rely on fossil fuels which are environmentally unfriendly and costly, yet there is no attention paid to renewable and environmentally friendly fuel solutions, much less to water supply through renewables. Also the capacity of the emergency systems are limited to low energy production which in itself is a major constraint which imposes severe limitations on the outreach of the crisis management efforts being displayed.

In many developing countries, only a small fraction of the population are connected to the nation-wide public utility water and sanitation services. Thus the challenge is to create a business model, in which the crisis CHPWp system would be moved after the crisis to the old villages or relocation sites for the refugees. This way the CHPWp would be a solid infrastrucure in which they can rely for the new village, bringing stability, clean water, and electricity. These are also elements that will attract local micro-entrepreneurs to start their business in a village where power is on: 24/7.



Concept definition (above document)

Service delivery operators (under process)

The cost/financing of the concept (under process)

Business potential mapping (under process)

The entrepreneur in this model (several options)


Proposed ecosystem:

Technology providers:

Concept delivery: Project Capricorn (currently unregistered entity)

CHP Technology: Nocart Ltd, Lahti, Finland. (Technology ready for delivery)

Water Heat exchangers: (proposed) B.O.B Tech Ltd. Espoo, Finland. TBD, to be chosen.

Water purification/filatration technolgy. TBD, to be chosen.

Water Chemicals: (proposed) Kemira Plc, Helsinki, Finland.

Battery technology. TBD, to be evaluated/chosen.

PV Array Technology. TBD, to be evaluated/chosen.

Wind turbine technology. TBD, to be evaluated/chosen.

Industrial components: (proposed) ABB, Helsinki, Finland, etc. TBD, to be chosen.

Autocad, 3D, Visuaization: Autodesk Clean Tech Partner Program. Autodesk, USA.


Energy solutions:

RE-Energy (PV, Geothermal, Biogas, Hydro, etc):

Heat exchanger solutions:

Water purifacation solutions:

Water lab/analyze solutions:

Automation software solutions:

Remote communication solutions:


Possible funding (to be sourced): World Bank, UN, OEA, Mining industry, local governments, etc.

Participating companies 10-15%

Nopef: pre-study and finacial support to ignite entrepreneurship for Project Capricorn.

Tekes, Finland. Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation.

Corfo, Chile. The Chilean Economic Development Agency.

UM, Finland. Finnish Foreign Ministry, Releif/Crisis programs.

World Bank: Funding; grants and loans.


Project timeline:


1-4 months: 30% of financing ready

4-8 months: 50% of financing ready

9-12 months: 80% of financing ready


Concept prototype:

1-4 months: Project consortium ready

4-8 months: Consortium technology ready for pilot production

9-12 months: First pilot unit for production.


Commercial project with Mining (biomining) idustry.

June 2013: First meeting and presenting proto-type, autocad, etc.

January 2014: Pilot plant in delivery phase.



Hi Petri,

It is very interesting. As a matter of fact I wrote a paper on Mobile off-grid hybrid renewable energy production and water purification container plant for crisis management opeations. It is under the journal review process now, I wll send it to you when is ready to publish.



Dear Petri,


I did revised the project thoroughly and edited the text, using my native American English language skills. 

I believe the project looks much better now, please read it and make your comments afterward when you have time.

It is important as I said before that we trascend the Crisis Management operation scope and look for ways

to create business opportunities and wealth for the region. It must appear as a win-win situation for local governments,

Mining companies, small businesses in the region, and for the funding agencies as well. Although it is true thatChile is a country

that has earthquakes and may have crises situations that need to be thought about and managed accordingly,

it is also important that the main motivation for people in general all over is wealth, jobs, business creation, opportunities to solve dire needs

such as using clean water for idustrial processes and depleting the ground wells in the area. All of these issues

must be brought down to $$$ and we must clearly show that our business model is a win-win situation that will convince the parties involved.


Please keep me up-to-date on everything that’s going on. Cheers



By |2022-07-06T12:09:34+00:00July 6, 2022|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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