Archive | March, 2013

Sizing up the body

29 Mar

On Wednesday evening we met for another design workshop. The focus this week was on the dimensions of the vehicle’s body. Here’s the result of our efforts:

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Two Seater Renewable Energy Vehicle (Trev)

24 Mar

The African Solar Taxi project has its technical origins in work originally undertaken at the University of South Australia, which was later extended by a motley collection of tinkerers and adventurers called Team Trev.

This video introduces Trev and shows it in action on the streets of Adelaide:


Trev. It’s green.

Team member profile: Enias Marama

19 Mar

MaramaMy name is Enias Marama and I am 60 years old. I am a Public Health Officer trained at Loughborough University of Technology in the UK. I have been working in Zimbabwe with the Italian Non Goverment Organisation CESVI since 2001.

During my time at CESVI, we helped to pioneer the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV (PMTCT) in a rural setting in Zimbabwe. Initially, HIV testing facilities were only centralised at a few national hospitals in major cities. Antiretroviral treatment (ARV) for those HIV positive was not available. Those testing HIV positive were often sent back to their rural homes to die.
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Wheels and tub

13 Mar

In the design of the African Solar Taxi, we aim to use as many off the shelf components as possible, to minimise the time, effort and expense of making custom components. In essence, we seek to ‘mash up’ the best readily available components into a new design and to strive for elegant simplicity.

When seeking to avoid reinventing the wheel, it is appropriate that the first major component we have selected is the wheel. At last night’s design workshop we considered a range of ATV, motorbike and downhill mountain bike wheels and we agreed that we’d use lightweight ATV tyres on pressed aluminium ATV rims, like this:

Wheel and tyre

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Early design decisions

11 Mar

Design is a process of understanding the requirements, developing and assessing the options and making design decisions.

Some of the design decisions we have made so far include: Continue reading

Second design workshop

7 Mar

Last night 11 members of our design team came together for another technical design workshop. It was a really productive night.

IMAG1594    IMAG1599 Continue reading

Maternity Ward nurse describes the need for the African Solar Taxi

5 Mar