CW Unplugged: Tech for Fire

Brought to you by Cambridge Wireless

CW Unplugged is back for 2019 bringing you Tech for the Environment. This year we're exploring the four elements, our third event is Tech for Fire.

Registration for this event is now closed.

About the event

CW Unplugged Hero Fire

This is the third of four events as part of the 2019 CW Unplugged: Tech for the Environment series. CW are proud to be making our contribution to work towards the Sustainable Development Goals through our events and partnerships with companies that will help deliver the 2030 Global Goals Agenda. 


In partnership with Arm, UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP - WCMC) and the Centre for Global Equality (CGE), we're hosting CW Unplugged: Tech for Fire an event that explores innovative technologies contributing to tackling battery power in developing and emerging economies.

Bringing together impact investors, designers, engineers, we'll help create solutions to specific challenges currently faced by start up ventues working on Tech for Fire.

To ensure we have the right group of people attending this exclusive event we would like to invite you to register your interest by clicking 'reserve a place' and we will reply back to confirm your suitability (within a week).

You can follow @CambWireless on Twitter and tweet about this event using #CWUnplugged.

Startup Challenges: Phycofeeds

Phycofeeds uses concentrated solar power to convert waste biomass into biofuels and fertiliser. Phycofeeds re-shapes the energy balance to favour an efficient production system with solar heat, waste nutrients and microalgae harvesting in a cost-effective biofuel production system.

Startup Challenges: Lambda Stretch

Lambda Stretch is a Cambridge advanced materials start-up, founded to address a major issue of current solar cell technologies. Solar radiation reaches its peak intensity in a spectral range (cyan/green) where current PV technologies’ spectral response is weak. In other words, there is a mismatch between what is given from the sun and what can be taken advantage of from the PV. Sunlight passes through a layer glass before impinging on a PV cell, which produces an electrical output. Lambda Stretch is designing an active coating to be applied to PV glass. As blue or green light passes through it will be converted to red, thus increasing the electrical output. Our materials are projected to increase the performance of a PV by 5-10%.

Series Sponsor Arm

Arm technology is at the heart of a computing and connectivity revolution that is transforming the way people live and businesses operate. Our advanced, energy-efficient processor designs have enabled intelligent computing in more than 125 billion chips. Over 70 percent of the world’s population are using Arm technology, which is securely powering products from the sensor to the smartphone to the supercomputer. Arm is committed to ensuring our work helps meet the United Nations Global Goals. Through our international partner ecosystem and philanthropic collaborations, we’re enabling technology to deliver the 2030 Global Goals agenda.

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Series Partner UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre

UNEP-WCMC confronts the challenges faced by our world's biodiversity.

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Event Partner Allia

Allia is a charity that supports social ventures – organisations.

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Sponsored by u-blox UK

As a global leader in wireless communication and positioning, our products and services are used by billions of people every day. And with this great power comes great responsibility, which is why we are always looking for ways to ensure that every part of our operations is run as sustainably as possible. We take great care to maintain a sustainable business model that looks after the interests of our customers, shareholders, the environment and the communities we operate in. Underpinning this aim are our five pillars of corporate social responsibility.

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Event facilitator Fresh Perspectiv

Our team of commercially-minded scientists love working at the intersection of science and business strategy to help companies to make informed decisions and enhance their commercial impact.

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Event facilitator Cambridge Consultants

The deep tech powerhouse of Capgemini

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Event facilitator Plextek

Plextek's technology specialists can solve your hardest challenges in smart sensing, advanced communications & intelligent data insight. Our people provide solutions to give you the market edge.

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The information supplied below may be subject to change before the event.


CW Unplugged Introduction: Abhi Naha, CCO, CW


Announcements: ghd Sustainability Challenge & Allia Future 20


Powering technology of the future: what are the risks to biodiversity?: Dr. Mike Harfoot, Senior Ecosystem Modelling Scientist, UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre

Batteries are incredibly important for the modern world and their importance is only set to grow. For example, electric vehicle production is projected to grow from less than 2 million vehicles a year in 2016 to nearly 40 million by 2030. However, extraction of the raw materials needed to manufacture batteries in the volumes needed raises environmental, humanitarian and political concerns. Investigating ways in which the tech sector can work with researchers to ensure that the growing volume of battery production, has minimal impact on the environment is of vital importance.


Allia Startup 1: Phycofeeds

Tech Challenge:
As a biologist, rather than an engineer, how do I get supplier quotes, engineering drawings and costings for system design of a continuous waste to fuel and feed production system, considering: pressure; temperature; particulate solids at 350°C and 150 bar?

Business Challenge:
In less than two weeks from now, I need to transfer the PCT (global) pathway of patent application to specified and chosen international territories.
With low company funds in the bank, and each territory costing about £3K. Which territories should I “put my chips on” and whom could I approach at such short notice to help a potential investment for more expansive IP territorial protection?


Allia Startup 2: Lambda Stretch


Intro to the Ideation workshop facilitators

We'll split into groups and intro you to your group leader before a quick break to refuel.




Ideation Workshop

A fast paced hour of brainstorming discussing the challenges Tech for Water faces. Attendees have the opportunity to contribute their ideas and experiences in facilitated groups ran by our partners.


Workshop Presentations

Informal presentations and discussion of the main outcomes from each Ideation group.


Next Steps


Join us in the atrium for food, drink & networking


Event Close


Arrival, registration and networking


Michael Harfoot - Senior Ecosystem Modelling Scientist, UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre

Mike works with colleagues at UNEP-WCMC and elsewhere to develop the Madingley model, a novel approach to understanding how the natural world functions and responds to natural and human disturbances. An earth system scientist with a strong interest in the biological world, he also applies his expertise to Centre-wide work to answer specific conservation questions. Before joining UNEP-WCMC he worked for Microsoft Research and gained his PhD from the University of Cambridge.

Emma Mee - Programme Manager, Allia

Emma supports impact entrepreneurs and start-ups looking to make a positive impact on the world, and leads the “Future 20”, a select group of inspiring start-ups addressing global challenges. She is passionate about encouraging and helping people to create solutions to some of the world’s biggest problems through innovation and entrepreneurship. She has 12 years' experience of working with large corporate clients solving sustainability challenges at the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability, and a sound understanding of climate change and renewable technologies. She also supports Cambridge Cleantech with business development and making connections to support the growth of both organisations, and is an elected member of the council for the National Trust, guiding long term strategy.

Tim Moore - VP Innovation, ghd Cambridge

Dr Tim Moore is VP Smart Devices at Coty Inc, the third largest beauty company in the world, where he is responsible for innovation and early stage development of devices and systems for beauty, including Internet of Things (IoT). Tim joined Coty through their acquisition of ghd. As the CTO of ghd he lead and built ghd’s world-class laboratory facilities in Cambridge where innovative high performance products are developed based upon a fundamental understanding of the physics of hair. Prior to joining ghd, Dr Moore was CEO of Sagentia SGAI Ltd, a technology consultancy based in Hong Kong and Cambridge focusing on the development of breakthrough consumer products. Dr Moore obtained his PhD in Microelectronics at Cambridge University.

Abhi Naha - Digital Accelerator Director, PwC UK

Abhi Naha is the Digital Accelerator Director at PwC. He is creating and leading a new tech division for PwC. The Digital Accelerator solves innovation challenges using the power of scale ups and ecosystems for greater insights, impact and value creation.

Abhi was the CCO of CW Cambridge Wireless and CEO of the Product as a Service Consortium. At CW, Abhi initiated and lead on the 5G private network testbed in Cambridge, corporate digital innovation accelerators and high value collaborations.

Abhi was the CEO and Founder of Zone V a Cambridge start up backed by Qualcomm and ARM focused on empowering people with aging eyes and visually impairment through inclusively designed smartphone software. He held senior roles at Powermat, San Jose based Synaptics and advisory roles for Goldman Sachs and Silver Lake in the area of mobile user interface technologies. Abhi is a senior advisor to an autonomous vehicle mobility scale up Conigital, Industry Partner (Digital Infrastructure) for Arjun Infrastructure Partners with 5 Billion Euros of assets under management and an Ambassador for the United Nations Global Sustainability Index Institute. Abhi studied Electronics and Electrical Engineering, has an MBA in International Marketing and authored a book on Mobile Handset Design when approached by Cambridge University Press. More recently Abhi has created an initiative to help train widows in developing countries learn python programming, gain financial empowerment and become future leaders.

Event Location

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Location info

The Bradfield Centre, 184 Cambridge Science Park Milton Road, Cambridge CB4 0GA

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