Wind power industry expert, Anders Røpke has worked in offshore wind power generation for almost a decade. He has designed, constructed and operated wind farms. But over time he began to feel a sense of distance from his career. He was good at his job and the job paid well, but something was missing.
“I guess I wanted to create more than I was able to do as a corporate employee. I am an innovator by nature, very curious, changing things up when they don’t work. I have been that way since childhood. This is why the corporate setting didn’t take root,” Anders explains.
But Anders needed a safe, risk-free learning environment where he could pressure test his idea. This is why he applied to the MIT Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp.
To Anders, learning the entrepreneurship skills taught at MIT was like getting superpowers for entrepreneurship. “This allows you to actually enjoy the stressful ride and have fun while the world around you changes at a breakneck pace,” says Anders.
After the Bootcamp his entrepreneurial transformation plan went into full throttle with Anders founding his own company, Wind Power LAB. The lab uses machine learning and image recognition to detect defects on wind turbine blades. This enables maintenance work and repairs to be scheduled before failures occur, reducing the loss of power generation capacity during peak periods. This preventative maintenance and state-of-good-repair work helps to keep wind power generation efficient and cheap enough to compete against conventional coal-fired or nuclear power generation.
“Just after Bootcamp, it felt kind of empty. Then you realize, the great people you met at MIT are now part of your network for life and they’re just one click away. The world suddenly got so much smaller. My network increased by 100 people from over 63 countries. Now I speak regularly with people in places like Brazil, the UK, Australia, U.S., Singapore, Switzerland, Dubai. And if I ever decide to visit a new country, I will probably have someone from the network that I could reach out to.”