Tiruvannamalai Collector honours schoolgirl

Vinisha won the award for designing a solar ironing cart

Tiruvannamalai Collector Sandeep Nanduri on Sunday honoured 14-year-old Vinisha Umashankar from the district, who recently won the Children’s Climate Prize conferred by the Children’s Climate Foundation from Sweden, for her innovation — solar ironing cart.

A class 9 student of SKP Vanitha International School in Tiruvannamalai, Vinisha was announced as winner on November 2 and presented with the award online on November 18.

“In 2019, Vinisha won the Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam IGNITE Award after submitting a technical paper on the solar ironing cart.

Later, the National Innovation Foundation designed a prototype and they have applied for a patent in my name and it will be transferred to Vinisha’s name once she is 18,” said the girl’s father Umashankar .

Vinisha has been shortlisted for the Rashtriya Bal Shakti Puraskar 2021.

“The cart will charge in five hours and can be used for six hours. We are planning to approach a German company to make customised solar panels that can charge the batteries in two hours,” he added.

He said that it was just casual talk about coal production and cutting down of trees that prompted Vinisha to embark on this project.

“I have always told her to come up with innovations that can help the underprivileged and something that can have a positive impact on the environment. It is a way of giving back to society,” he said.

Vinisha had made a sensor-based smart ceiling fan. “It will stop when no one is around and resume once movement is detected by the sensor. This will help conserve electricity,” added Mr. Umashankar.

On Sunday, Mr. Nanduri met her in the Collectorate and honoured her.

“He asked her what she wanted to become and Vinisha immediately replied that she wanted to become a research scientist and invent a single cold vaccine,” said Mr. Umashankar.

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