Update from Kenya: The SOL5 generates income
and supports the entrepreneurs

Posted Wednesday 12 October 2016 by Urs Riggenbach.

It is one thing to build and install the SOL5 solar concentrator, but it’s another one to use it. Knowing this, we did our best to train the two community businesses in Kenya where we’ve installed our SOL5 models in April/May. Now it has been four months since we’ve left Kenya, but with the usage reports we’re getting from the field we are confident to say: The SOL5 is used and useful, generates income, and supports the entrepreneurs.

SOL5 Pilot Field Data

Below are the key metrics of the field data generated over the last months. Much potential exists to improve these metrics, especially focusing around the issue of effective use that we’ll cover in another post.

SOL5 Roaster - Peanut Business

Metric Before After
Charcoal use / year 16 542 kg kWh 0 kg
Charcoal cost / year 803 € 0 €
Health Risks High risk No risk
SOL5 Roaster at the Yier Ngima Peanut Butter Cooperative.

SOL5 Oven - Bakery Business

Metric Before After
Electricity use / year 11400 kWh 3400 kWh
Electricity cost / year 990 € 297 €
CO2 emissions / year 6850 kg 2055 kg
SOL5 Oven at the Koptige Bakery.

Above are the key metrics from our pilots showing how much money the entrepreneurs save each month using the SOL5. In addition to the money, the businesses reported that they now produce more, at higher quality and with healthier working conditions.

More productive: The bakery was suffering from frequent power cuts. Sometimes it was impossible to bake without electricity, and sometimes an oven would stop working midway and the bread batch was lost. Now, with the SOL5 Oven, they do not depend on the unstable electricity grid anymore and are producing more.

Better quality: The roastery reported that with the SOL5 the peanuts do not get the smoky taste that they used to get with their previous charcoal roasters. Now, without the smoky taste they have a higher quality produce.

Better working conditions: When using charcoal and firewood as fuel, smoke is a big factor affecting worker’s heath. The ladies at the roasting business are pleased that there is no unhealthy smoke emission with the SOL5.

 

...And all of this while making monthly savings and reducing CO2 emissions.

More than ever are we convinced that GoSol’s SOL5 is a changemaker technology. Stay tuned!

Lady at Koptige Bakery taking out freshly baked muffins out of the SOL5 Oven installed in May 2016.

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