Samsung Africa launches solar powered internet schools

COMPUTING

|
Image: By Samsung
Samsung Africa launches solar powered internet schools

By Carole Kimutai, Nairobi, Kenya

Samsung Africa has unveiled a continental project to boost computer literacy and expand internet access at the basic education level, with a Solar Powered Internet School model.

The model, unveiled in a pilot project in South Africa, features a fully-equipped containerised computer school kitted with Samsung PCs and remote access internet connectivity.

The pioneering project at the Samsung Engineering Academy in Boksburg, South Africa, is also set to be replicated in other parts of Africa, including Kenya.

Speaking in Nairobi, Samsung Electronics East Africa Business Leader Robert Ngeru confirmed that plans for a similar Kenyan launch are in high gear as Samsung races to support initiatives geared at raising computer literacy in East Africa.

Describing the project, Ngeru explained that the new model features an exclusively solar-powered, mobile and completely independent classroom designed for use in remote rural areas with limited or no access to electricity.

The school’s model addresses one of Africa’s largest economic challenges – electrification.  On average, less than 25% of rural areas on the continent benefit from electricity, resulting in isolated communities with limited access to education and connectivity – both of which are key to fast-tracking a nation’s development.

“We have set an ambitious goal for ourselves in Africa: to positively impact five million lives by 2015,” confirmed Ngeru.

“We believe that this can most effectively be achieved if we connect our CSR initiatives with our history and core business. With the goal to grow our business on the continent, we also know that we have to sustain our level of innovation."

This can only be achieved if we invest in education to facilitate African thought leadership and to ensure we have access to a large workforce of skilled engineers in the future. The Solar Powered Internet School is a great example of this strategy at play,” added Ngeru.

The launch follows the rollout of Samsung Africa’s ‘Built for Africa’ product range and the Samsung Electronics Engineering Academy earlier this year. Each Solar Powered Internet School is built in a 40 foot (12 metre) long shipping container, making them easily transportable via truck to remote areas.

The schools are built for energy scarce environments, harsh weather conditions, and for transportation over long distances. Fold-away solar panels provide enough energy to power the unit for up to nine hours a day, and for one and a half days without any sunlight at all. The solar-panels themselves are made from rubber instead of glass to ensure they are hardy and durable enough to survive long journeys across the continent.

“The amount of power generated by the schools each day means they can be used beyond the traditional school day as an adult education centre in the afternoons or a community centre over weekends,” adds Tessa Calleb, Samsung’s East Africa CSR Manager.

“Our goal was to create an environment that would facilitate learning for whole communities in remote areas that otherwise don’t have access to education tools or internet connectivity.”

The Solar Powered Internet School prototype is currently being piloted at the Samsung Electronics Engineering Academy in Boksburg. It will then be sent to Qunu in the Eastern Cape to undergo further testing as a functioning learning and teaching environment, with the aim to e Schools thereafter.

 



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE COMPUTING NEWS

Participate in the Data Management Benchmark Survey

Data management experts MDM have launched the 2015 Data Management benchmark survey to allow businesses to assess their company’s data management maturity against that of their peers and competitors. Read More

Expert decries lack of e-readiness in Botswana

The Director of Strategic and Special Projects at the Botswana International University of Science and Technology, says not enough is being done to ensure that Botswana is e-ready.  Read More

CA Southern Africa Road Show – next stop Kenya

The CA Southern Africa roadshow is set to bring Digital Transformation and the Application Economy to Kenya. Read More

Converged infrastructure and services lay the foundation for agility and dynamic IT provisioning

The real value of technology can only be realised if solutions are fully integrated, says T-Systems. Read More

Nanotechnology to be translated into Setswana

July 31st has been set as the closing date for the Botswana Institute for Technology Research and Innovation nanotechnology challenge.  Read More

Clock strikes twelve on Windows Server 2003 support

As of midnight tonight, Microsoft will no longer offer support for Windows Server 2003. Read More

Cyber City Kgotla hosts Knowledge Transfer Session

Botswana Innovation Hub’s ICT Developer Community, Cyber City Kgotla, has hosted its first Knowledge Transfer Session (KTS) in partnership with Oracle.  Read More

Seeing the light: How file analysis tools can unleash the light in ‘dark data’

Almost all organisations have volumes of dark data stored away in dusty vaults and off-site storage facilities, historically unaccounted for, unmanaged, and undervalued, says CommVault. Read More

Accenture identifies tech trends for CIOs to follow

Accenture has identified social, mobile, analytics and cloud (SMAC) as the new technology trends in the business environment, urging FMCG industry CIOs to take advantage of these trends. Read More

Telecom Namibia implements information display system at Ondangua airport

A team of Telecom Namibia engineers and technicians successfully implemented for the Namibia Airports Company (NAC) a Flight Information Display System (FIDS) over the Telecom Namibia network at Ondangua airport recently. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4Afrika

FEATURED STORY

Kenyan SACCOS riding on innovation to attract customersKenyan SACCOS riding on innovation to attract customers

As confidence in mainstream banks remains low due to prohibitive interest rates, customers are embracing Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCO) as an alternative.

IN DEPTH

As curtain falls on MDGs, what next?As curtain falls on MDGs, what next?

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, president of the Copenhagen Consensus Centre, speaks to Biztechafrica about setting smart targets.