Investors and power developers from around the world gathered in Washington last week to push ideas and efforts to alleviate the shortages of electricity that plague many African countries.
The In-Stream Auger Turbine, which uses flowing water to generate power, was among the technological innovations exhibited at the second annual Powering Africa Summit.
“This unit, unlike other hydro-energy projects, doesn't take years to perform,” said Chun Pong Ng of Zoetic Global. “Unlike wind and solar that only deliver when Mother Nature cooperates, these units deliver energy 24/7, nonstop as long as the river flows."
His company just signed a 100-megawatt purchasing power agreement with Ghana's electricity company and hopes to deliver the turbines by mid-summer.
Another example of innovation: Karpownership, dubbed the "floating power plant," according to Veronica Bolton-Smith from EnergyNet, the organizer of the summit.
"They are able to pull power that's generated from their ship onto the mainland and they've just done a project in Ghana," Bolton-Smith said.
However, she stressed, the smaller projects are just as important as bigger ones.