Physicist Ashok Gadgil has helped over 100 million people across four continents by making efficient electric lighting affordable, water safe to drink, and designing energy efficient stoves.
Millions of people die annually from waterborne diseases, and Gadgil's UV Waterworks disinfects water using UV light to kill pathogens. Using only 60 watts of electricity, it provides enough affordable safe drinking water for 2,000 people daily. Communities from India to the Philippines to Ghana use this system. Gadgil also invented the Berkeley-Darfur Stove to reduce the fuel demand of millions in displacement camps in Darfur. His stoves have benefitted hundreds of thousands of people in Sudan and Ethiopia. Gadgil also innovated utility-financed efficient-lighting programs that have been successfully implemented in 38 countries in Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
Today, at UC Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, Gadgil continues to research ways to improve the water and energy supply of people in need. A graduate of the University of Bombay, the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, and the University of California, Berkeley, he has received numerous awards, including the Zayed Future Energy Prize, Heinz Award, and Lemelson-MIT Award for Global Innovation.