Students In Kenya Launching Solar Powered Motorcycles

Electric scooters and motorcycles are starting to get into our daily lives offering a perfect personal transportation alternative for commuters. However, how can they be used cheaply in remote places where electricity is scarce? Well, you start to harvest the magical pixies from the Sun itself, as these three Kenyan students are doing.
Electric scooters in Kenya 1 photo
According to a news report, three talented students from Kenya, Robert Achoge, James Ogola, and Charles Ogingo, managed to create electrically-powered motorcycles that can be recharged using solar power.

Their invention is called Ecotran, and it works by trapping the photons’ energy into batteries that can then be used to power the bikes. A perfect alternative considering the anemic electricity supply in some parts of Kenya.

The small-sized batteries are built strong and can power the two-wheelers for up to 70 kilometers (43.5 miles). After that, you take it out and replace it with a recharged one straight from the solar station. Rinse and repeat, and you’ll never spend a dime on fuel again.

There is a small issue to be mentioned, though. The bikes have a bit of trouble going up hill as their acceleration is quite weak. However, the students are working on improving the system.

When they first started this project, only three locally bought motorcycles were modified to run on electricity. That happened about two years ago, and since then there have been over 35 bikes converted.

The Ecotran project got a lot of attention lately, and its creators received a fair amount of cash from the United States African Development Fund to support their idea and continue with their growth.

The plan is to have a big fleet of electric motorcycles and enough solar charging stations to support them. Next, the bikes get leased to those who want to get places cheap and eco-friendly.

Most riders in Kenya use leased motorcycles already, but they are all gasoline-powered. With some luck, the three students might reduce the number of combustion engined two-wheelers in the area and replace them with their sustainable version.
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