Dartmouth students study wind in remote African areas

Windpower Engineering

February 22, 2011

By Kathleen Zipp

In a recent talk with Second Wind, I learned a group of Dartmouth College engineering students are using a Nomad 2 Wind Data Logger the company donated to study wind in a remote region of Tanzania. Through the school’s Humanitarian Engineering Project, the students will help determine whether winds in Tanzania’s Kigoma region can drive a turbine consistently and productively. The turbine would provide electricity for tasks such as pumping water and charging cell phones and batteries for residents of Kigoma, an inland region of Tanzania bordered by Lake Tanganyika and consisting mainly of small villages that aren’t on electrical grids.

“Western Tanzania doesn’t have much in terms of recorded wind data, and the terrain is variable throughout the region,” says Molly Wilson, one of the student volunteers. “We are assessing wind velocity as well as direction, and are also quite curious about the seasonal variations as data from some areas show strong seasonal correlations coinciding with the rainy and dry seasons.”

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