Pelé opened a brand new, one of a kind football pitch in a favela in Rio yesterday, which will make a huge difference for local children.
The World Cup highlighted the social issues and the problems of inequality and poverty that exist in Brazil, and it also showed that it is still a country obsessed with the game of football.
However, it's becoming more difficult and more dangerous for kids to play out on the street, but this latest innovation brought about by Shell and British start-up energy company Pavegen could be the way forward. Earlier this week, Brazilian soccer legend Pelé officially opened a new field for the kids of Morro da Mineira to play on, but it's a pitch with a difference.
This field is literally powered by teamwork, as underneath the turf are ten rows of 20 panels that absorb the kinetic energy of the players moving around above them to produce the electricity that runs the floodlights to keep the pitch illuminated.
Pelé said that he had been named after Thomas Edison (his real name being Edson Arantes do Nascimento) and that this was not only a touching moment for him personally, but that the pitch was a huge step forward, showing "the extraordinary things possible when science and sport come together."
During the day the pitch will use solar power, while at night it will turn to the players to generate the light needed to play, so they had best make sure that they don't slack off in covering as much ground as possible.
André Araujo, head of Shell in Brazil, said that there is also another aim for this project, and that is to get kids of every background interested in science: "by tapping into the world’s passion and interest in football, we aim to capture the attention of youngsters around the world so they think differently about energy and the opportunity of science studies and careers."
Via The Telegraph