POWER Roll, a developer of ultra low-cost and lightweight flexible solar PV, has been awarded funding through Innovate UK’s Energy Catalyst 7 to evaluate the use of flexible PV film in powering rural, off-grid applications in developing regions.
As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, Power Roll recently switched the focus of one of its projects to supply power to a rural health centre in Southern Zambia. The health centre provides basic healthcare to a rural community. On Call Africa, a UK healthcare charity, oversees the running of the clinic and Vero Power, specialists in working with communities across Africa to enable access to electricity, is Power Roll’s project delivery partner working in Zambia.
The off-grid system consists of a 5 kW flexible solar PV array, an inverter with remote monitoring and a 3.2 kVA/5.2 kWh battery store to provide power throughout the night. The electricity generated will power lighting, a refrigerator and other essential equipment.
“The World Bank estimates there are 840 million people without access to electricity and another 3 billion that rely on polluting fuels for heating and cooking,” said Neil Spann, managing director, Power Roll. “Energy demand is set to grow rapidly in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia. Our flexible solar film has the potential to dramatically increase access to off-grid power because it can be manufactured for just $0.03 per Watt – substantially lower than any other source of power.”
Executive Chair, Innovate UK, Dr Ian Campbell, said: “Businesses from all over the UK have answered our call rapidly to meet the challenges we face today and in the future through the power of innovation. The ideas we have seen can truly make a significant impact on society, improve the lives of individuals, especially those in vulnerable groups and enable businesses to prosper in challenging circumstances.”
The scope of the trial is wide ranging. Power Roll will assess the technical benefits associated with a lightweight, portable source of solar power, and will also evaluate how access to affordable, clean electricity can enable social inclusion and gender equality. It is also trialling novel approaches to mounting the solar film using wire tensioning systems, which allow the solar film to be quickly and easily moved to where it is most needed.
“Deploying Power Roll’s innovative PV technology in our ground-breaking micro-grid solutions can be life-changing for rural off-grid communities. The cost-effectiveness of the product, the lightweight nature of the system and the ease of training our existing supply chain of installation partners will deliver substantial benefits,” said Craig Morgan, chief executive officer, VeroPower.
Power Roll is working closely with partner BIPVCo to integrate its flexible PV modules into the pilot system. These modules will provide valuable benchmark data to help evaluate the performance of Power Roll’s solar film, which will be used in the next stage of the project.
The project is scheduled to run through to the end of 2021 and Power Roll will report on the outcomes in January 2022.
Black Friday Sale YA FIKA with Lafarge Zambia!
Join Lafarge Zambia Customer Experience Manager @Ranel Ahmed and Marketing Specialist @Precious Gozwa live tomorrow morning @07:30HRS on Hot FM as they share more about our #BlackFriday Sale tomorrow 27th November 2020.
Simply buy 50 or more bags of cement and get 5 free bags of cement when you place an order via the AfriDelivery or Tigmoo Eats Food Delivery Services mobile apps.
You can also walk in any Builders Warehouse, Cash Build, or Atheneon store for this great deal. Please call our Customer Care number on 0211 367600 for more information.
*Terms & Condition Apply
Zambian truck drivers urged to exercise caution on South African roads, following violent attacks against foreign drivers.
ZAMBIA’S High Commissioner to South Africa Major General Jackson Miti has called on Zambian truck drivers on the South African route to be cautious on the roads following an eruption of violent attacks against foreign drivers in some parts of that country.
This is according to a press statement issued by Mrs Naomi Nyawali, First Secretary Press and Public Relations at the Zambia High Commission in South Africa.
Maj Gen Miti said this in the wake of violent protects in Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal Province, in which hundreds of locally engaged truck drivers protested against the use of foreign truck drivers.
Maj Gen Miti said the safety of Zambian truck drivers was cardinal and advised them to ensure they avoided being victims of violent protests currently going on in some parts of South Africa.
He said the High Commission would continue monitoring the situation and advise accordingly.
Maj Gen Miti added that so far, no Zambian was affected by the violent atacks against foreigners, particularly more visible in Durban where a number of trucks are reported to have been torched.
According to the Road Freight Association in South Africa, about 30 foreign truck drivers have so far been attacked across South Africa in the last seven days.
SADC Ambassadors in Berlin call for greater unity for economic diplomacy
THE Ambassador of Namibia to Germany H.E Andreas Guibeb has called for strengthening of regional groupings in Africa such as SADC because they have the ability to collectively develop the African continent and make it a bigger player in the global economics and politics.
“There is saying that you can go far along but you can indeed further in unity hence the reason the importance of regional groups such as our SADC which we must continue to strengthen,” said Ambassador Guibeb.
The senior Namibian envoy was speaking at a small farewell event that was hosted by the Ambassador of Zambia to Germany H.E Anthony Mukwita on Axel Springer Strasse on Wednesday.
“There is no problem too big or too small for Africa to resolve as long as we put our heads together in unity to find a lasting solution,” Ambassador Guibeb said.
The SADC group of Ambassadors is regarded to be one of the most organized diplomatic groups in Berlin with its own monthly meetings and events to push the economic diplomacy agenda of the member states.
It also uses the platform to champion other causes of concern for the region such as energy or agriculture development or mere solidarity when it feels that a member state has been wronged, with the mandate from home countries.
With a total population of about 400 million people and an almost 1trillion-dollar GDP, the group that comprises, Angola, Botswana, Zambia, South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Madagascar, Mauritius, Swaziland, Lesotho, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo is widely seen as an economically progressive regional grouping.
Despite having a southern regional agenda, the group in Berlin has often included other African countries on the continent. For instance, Nigeria, the continent’s largest economic powerhouse was represented at the event by Ambassador Yusuf Tuggar.
Another Ambassador the group was bidding farewell to was H.E Calvin Masenyetse from the Kingdom of Lesotho who hailed his stay in Germany and interaction with colleagues as a milestone in his diplomatic career.
“Balozi’s (Ambassadors) I can safely say this is one of the best moments I have enjoyed in my career as a public servant and like they say in diplomacy we part to meet yet again in another capacity,” said Ambassador Masenyetse.
Others present were the Ambassador of Botswana H.E Masire Mmasegoa Mwamba, a seasoned diplomat who once served as Deputy Secretary General of the Commonwealth in London including Ambassador Stone Sizani a veteran diplomat who represents the Republic of South Africa and once served as Chief Whip of parliament in South Africa.
Ambassador Mukwita said quoting Shakespeare that, “to part is such sweet sorrow but we can only work here for as long as our leadership allows until we meet again. The great thing is expanding our horizons and make good friends while on duty abroad.”
The small group was, however, cognizant of the threat the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has caused to SADC economies and beyond even in the tranquil of the small circle.
Ambassador Tuggar of Nigeria said, “diplomacy was rendered void without personal contact among human beings which is essential to the exchange of views-points.”
“In an era of post-truths, social media and now COVID-19, the opportunity to clarify issues and exchange information in real time which is the essence of democracy is threatened when diplomats are unable to meet”, Ambassador Tuggar observed.
The farewell was also attended by visiting Namibian Ambassador to France H.E Albertus Aochamub.
The SADC region is largely seen as an economic destination due to its vast natural resources, young population and political stability.
The envoys in Berlin continue to interact mostly remotely due to a lock down as a consequence of spiking new infections of covid-19 that has claimed millions of lives globally.
This is according to a statement issued by Kellys Kaunda, Press Secretary at the embassy of Zambia in Berlin, Germany.