Summer is a season most people associate with plenty of sun, swimming, cookouts, drinks, and relaxation. With only a few weeks more until it comes around, we can bet many of you are eager for all the fun in store for everyone. However, as the temperature rises so does the population of mosquitoes. To prevent their proliferation, let’s hope a project dubbed the Guardian Toad gets off the ground soon.

A cool and creative concept developed by VML for Alicorp/Sapolio, the goal is to disrupt the egg-laying habits of mosquitos that can spread dengue among the local population. Specifically, this compact and motorized device is intended for use in Peru, which has been plagued by an outbreak of the viral disease.

According to VML’s research, “80% of the population in the most affected areas lack clean water, forcing residents to collect water in plastic containers from tanker trucks that distribute it from house to house.” The Guardian Toad keeps the surface in motion as it swims around autonomously.

Instead of batteries, the team outfitted the housing with a photovoltaic cell to turn solar energy into mechanical energy. The Guardian Toad’s shell is engineered to be buoyant, while a small motor spins and turns the blades for propulsion.

From what we can tell, there is no steering involved as the Guardian Toad just bumps around the walls to agitate the water. Since mosquitoes ideally search for stagnant bodies of water to lay their eggs in, the waves generated by the system should discourage this activity.

VML stated, “we received input from two professionals from the country’s most prestigious universities for the research and development of the Guardian Toad.” So far, we find it quirky, but the design and functionality seem promising given the situation in Peru.

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Images courtesy of VML