Earlier this month, Team Trev member Andrew visited Zimbabwe for a week to meet with key stakeholders in our project to develop a solar-powered vehicle for transporting pregnant women to hospital in rural Zimbabwe. His other task was to assess the roads.
The trip was a great success—we now have a much clearer view of the task ahead, and enthusiastic support from the NGO, hospital and health authorities in Zimbabwe.
One of the key outcomes of the trip is a change of name for the project. Nobody wants to travel in an ambulance, and so the vehicle will be called the ‘African Solar Taxi’.
The other major outcome is that we now have GPS paths and lots of video for the roads we will be using. Many of the roads are dirt tracks. Most of the bitumen roads have not been maintained since they were built about 30 years ago; they are wide enough for one car only, and have potholes and rough edges. This means that we will have to build a vehicle that is both lightweight and robust, with four wheels.
You can find out more, and track our progress, on our new blog: africansolartaxi.com.