For the four-part Engineering Big Ideas series presented by Mouser, electrical engineer and television host Grant Imahara has traveled around the world to see what really happens on the road to innovation. Going into the design for manufacture phase, he takes a closer look at how to get an idea off the ground—or even into space.
In Portland, Oregon, he chats with Josh Lifton, co-founder and president of Crowd Supply, which recently found backing for Airpup, a hybrid kite-helium balloon with potential videography, communications, and meteorology applications. It’s only one of the many ideas, Crowd Supply has successfully floated to the innovation community, including some components found in Oregon’s first satellite.
His crowdfunding platform for electronic open-source hardware helps engineers get through the critical funding stage to bring their ideas to life. It’s a risk mitigation strategy that allows creators to manufacture their concepts without going bust and leads to the next generation of innovation.