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Brentwood native travels to Rwanda to install turbine

Oct 04, 2011   |   by Kary McCafferty   |   Seacoastonline

Brentwood resident and recent Dartmouth graduate, Emily Porter, returned home in mid September from a two-month stint in Rwanda, where she worked with a group of seven other students to develop a turbine generated hydro-electric power system with the hopes of bringing electricity to a remote village.

A dual Spanish and engineering major, Emily got the chance to travel to Rwanda as part of a group project that each student in the engineering program is required to take part in. Students must create a project that would help the company who sponsors them. Emily, along with the seven other members, was financed by, instead of a corporation, the Dartmouth Humanitarian Engineering Group. The funding for this group project was provided by the Class of 1980 for sustainability efforts.

As a result the students chose to develop a Pico-hydro turbine system that would provide electricity for a remote village in Rwanda, for which Porter acted as mechanical lead.

Essentially a water wheel is installed in the selected village, which generates electricity. Community members charge car batteries with the produced electricity and bring the batteries back to their homes.

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