“I came up with the idea for Pavegen in 2009, inspired by the desire to help do something about climate change. While at Loughborough University, I won a placement with a major European energy company to look at renewable energy solutions for street lighting. I left, having failed to make wind or solar work in dense cities, but I was inspired by the research I was carrying out.
Around this time, I was regularly using Victoria train station, which has around 75 million visitors rushing through it each year. I realised that there might be potential to harness some of that human kinetic energy and convert it into off-grid electricity.
From there I developed the first Pavegen prototype, a rectangular device that contained a single generator. But as an unproven technology I had nowhere to validate my invention. In the end, I made a risky decision to install a Pavegen tile on a building site, without permission. I took some photos, posted them online, and then used social media to try to persuade the developer to invest in a Pavegen system. It worked.”
Through his extraordinary vision and technical knowledge, over the years Laurence has won investment from some of the most reputable tech companies and transacted with some of the world’s best-known brands as well as government agencies in the US and UK.
Speaking with both passion and optimism, he has delivered talks at the latest London Tech Week, the RSA Las Vegas, SXSW 2017 and GITEX. He has also spoken at TED events as well as for the UK Government’s Department for International Trade, including a number of supporting talks at COP23.
The significant achievements of Laurence and Pavegen have been recognised with numerous awards and accolades and continues to attract global media coverage.