2008 Associate Laureate, Applied Technology
The Philippines, Born 1960
Motivated by the plight of poor farmers in the Philippines faced with the high cost of fuel for their cooking, Alexis Belonio , born in 1960, developed a low-cost, ecological method that uses agricultural waste — in the form of rice husks — to solve the problem.
The inveterate Filipino inventor was well equipped to meet the challenge, having worked as a researcher at the International Rice Research Institute and as an associate professor of agricultural engineering at Central Philippine University.
The rice husk-powered gas stove for which Belonio won a Rolex Award in 2008 is only one of many inventions he has devised to improve people’s lives.
Bent on sharing the technology, he is using the prize to introduce the device to other parts of the world, including Vietnam and Nepal, and set up a demonstration and training centre at Central Philippine University where visitors can receive a free copy of the fabrication manual.
Published in 2009