Three students of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) – Elizabeth Oduro-Koranteng (Bsc. Electrical/Electronic Engineering), Max Otuteye (Bsc. Computer Engineering), and Obeng Okofo Dartey (MPhil. Computer Engineering) – have manufactured a solar-powered automatic hand washing station.
The students are members of the Innovation Centre of the College of Engineering (CoE) of the University.
The project, which began in 2020 with funding from Strengthening Engineering Ecosystem in Sub-Saharan Africa (SEESA), has been under the Office of the Provost.
The project team were under the supervision of Dr. Griffith Selorm Klogo, a member of the Steering Committee for the Innovation Centre and with technical support from the Centre’s management.
Explaining how the invention works, Elizabeth Oduro-Koranteng, a member of the project team, said the touchless, solar-powered handwashing station was designed and built, to facilitate handwashing, as part of enforcing the COVID-19 protocols in KNUST. She further explained that using sensor technology, human contact that occurs when washing the hands is limited.
“The design of the handwashing station is to eliminate the problems associated with the traditional hand washing methods. With traditional hand washing strategies, there is more secondary contact between individuals as a result of opening and closing taps.”
“The station is designed as two washing stations in one setup to allow for more individuals to wash their hands at a time. An installed battery also saves up energy for use during nighttime. It has a reservoir that stores water and dispenses it when there is a user at the hand washing station. A drain is connected to a pipe which allows used water to flow out,” she added.
She also stated that while implementing the project, artisans such as metalworkers and plumbers were contacted to aid with the fabrication and testing of the hand washing station.
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