Reliable Energy Supply for Maternity Center
It is particularly unfair that instead of being a happy event, birth turns into avoidable death. But there is a reason to be optimistic. For a generation, initiatives around the world have dramatically reduced maternal mortality and newborn deaths. Recently published data confirms that the DRC is making progress in the fight against maternal and neonatal mortality. “The DRC has the third highest mortality rate of children under 5 years, just after India and Nigeria. Approximately every 30 minutes, a woman dies in childbirth in the DRC. Every year, about 15,000 women are losing their lives during childbirth” according to The Communiqué of The Congolese Ministry of Health.
In the Medical Center “Moyi Mwa Ntong” in Kinshasa there are power blackouts for hours and sometimes for entire days. During these blackouts the center uses a noisy, vibrating Diesel generator of 35 kVA, which disturbs employees and patients alike. Given that the maternity service is a very important service for mothers and children and in the center there are 5 births per day, the blackout can lead to devastating effects.
The group of students of DR Congo, Benin, Senegal and Germany will provide a secondary source of current preventing power blackouts in the Maternity Center, by installing a solar photovoltaic electrification system. This project will provide sufficient electricity for the devices used in the Maternity Center.
The size of the PV System depends on the available budget. According to this, the group defined three different options. These are systems which have the necessary capacity to power all AC and DC devices of the center for two days, even if the PV system is not generating electricity.
The options are the following:
Option “Basic”: In addition to the energy required to charge the battery, this option can power the LED lights bulbs (DC devices) of the center during the day.
Option “Standard”: To protect the life of newborns, this option considers powering the urgently needed AC devices for newborns, like an incubator and a heating table, during the day, additionally to the lighting. At the same time the battery is charged for the probable case of a blackout.
Option “Premium”: This option will power all DC and AC devices during the day, while charging the battery simultaneously.
What is needed?
Solar panels: 50 panels, 80 panels and 100 panels are needed for the different three options. (150 Euro each)
Battery: 25 batteries (300€ each)
Inverter: 1 inverter (2.500€)
Lamps: 150 lamps (1,5€each)
Protections for the system: ~ 1000€
MPPT Controller: 400€
Starting Budget: 2.600€
Financial Status: 13,1 % (from “Basic” Option)