Nasi Rwigema

Lead engineer: Solafrica

Nasi Rwigema started his career designing and researching military aircraft but, ethically speaking, the job never suited him. So when Solafrica came knocking on his door he jumped at the opportunity to work for a company that is focused on building South Africa's first solar thermal power plant. As the lead engineer at Solafrica Rwigema is leading a brand- new industry that is vital to solving South Africa's growing energy needs and lack of renewable energy technology. Thankfully, the weight of his responsibility does not seem to faze this 25-year-old, whose calm, methodical approach and remarkable scientific intuition have been key to his success. The mere fact that Solafrica is willing to invest millions of its own money in a government proposal that Rwigema is largely responsible for creating is testament to his abilities. Where Rwigema still finds the energy to finish his master's in aeronautical engineering is anybody's guess. Perhaps the energy is renewable. � Eric Axelrod

Twitter: @Nasi_R