Kijito Wind Power Limited

Thursday, 25 Jul 2024

Esilanke Primary School, Kenya, 2007


Project Summary

Project Name: Wind-based electrification of Esilanke primary school
Location: Esilanke, Kajiado district
Country:  Kenya
Purpose: School power supply
Installation: March 2007
End users: Esilanke primary school and community
Project developer: KenTek(DK) and Windgen (K)
Funding: Danish International Development Agency(DANIDA)
Wind turbine: KT-100 (rated power : 1000W)
Energy Storage: Battery charging
Control Strategy: Charge controller, inverter, dump load
Wind resource: excellent (annual mean wind speed = 6.9 m/s at 10 m above ground level)



The wind power system consists of a KT-1000 wind turbine, a charge controller, a 48V-200Ah battery bank, an inverter and a dump load.
To protect against overloading, the wind turbine yaws automatically with the increasing wind speed.
More information about the KT-1000 and the associated power supply equipment is available on KenTec website.



The installation happened in two steps. In January 2007, Kijito team built the foundation of the turbine and carried out the first power wiring of the school.
In March 2007, the wind turbine was installed in 3 days and the last day was dedicated to school staff training to power system operation and maintenance, and energy consumption management.
The capacity building process was reinforced in August 2007 with another 3 days training session.



The power produced by the 1kW KenTec wind turbine generates enough electricity for  lighting 6 classrooms, the office block, the headmistress' office, the teachers' house and the community's hall. It also powers a computer, a printer, a TV and video system and outside safety lights.
Thanks to the electricity, the school teaching standards have increased and the school can start new projects thanks to this new equipment and the generated incomes from selling the extra power to Community's members.



The project was inaugurated on the 2nd of April 07 by the representatives of the Royal Ambassador of Denmark in Kenya Mr Joe Okudo and Ms Hellen Bonuke on behalf of HE Bo Jensen.
Mrs Kent Larsen (KenTec) and Harry Horn (Windgen) attended the celebration organised by Esilanke Community.
It was a very beautiful ceremony we were pleased to be invited for and take part.

Esilanke Community

Esilanke Community is located on the edge of the Rift Valley, in Kajiado district - Kenya. It counts 104 families and about 1000 inhabitants. Esilanke Primary School welcomes about 200 pupils. Farming (milk production) is the main activity.
Prevailing sources of energy are : kerosene (paraffin) lamps (93%) for lighting, cow dung (83%), charcoal (79%) and wood (50%) for cooking and heating. A very few families enjoy electricity (4%) thanks to solar panels charging batteries.

The project
The electrification of Esilanke Primary School is a project developed by the Danish wind energy consulting company KenTec and its Kenyan partner Windgen under their B2B Danida programme.
Prior to the electrification, Esilanke did not have electricity. The closest grid point is Kajiado town, 15km away.
This electrification project uses a 1kW wind turbine (KT-1000). The generated electricity charges batteries. It constitutes one of the first wind-based rural electrification projects in Kenya.
Kijito Windpower Limited (KWPL) was in charge of the installation which was completed on the 8th of March 2007.

Wind resource
The wind resource is quite exceptional: the mean wind speed is expected to reach 6.9 m/s at 10 m above ground level! Indeed Esilanke area benefits from the natural asset of being on the top of the edge of the Rift Valley.

The impact of accessing electricity on Esilanke's development
Thanks to electricity, the school has now started morning and evening classes that enable the pupils to do their homework in proper conditions. The teaching standards have also been increased thanks to the computer and modern video system. Furthermore the teachers accommodated at the School have now much better living conditions since their house is also powered. Given that accessing power is a requirement for becoming a boarding school, Esilanke School has now this new target. The local economy has also been stimulated with the incomes generated thanks to the mobile battery charging activity developed at the School: 30 customers come every month. These incomes are used first for financing the maintenance and then for new school investments. At a next step, the extra wind power that is currently dumped will be used to power the diesel pump that supplies the Community with water in order to reduce the Community's diesel bill.

The keys to success: simple and reliable technology, mobilizing local expertise, capacity building
In order to guarantee sustainability, the entire project development has been based on the following principles:
1) Simple and energy-efficient technology for facilitating the access-to-electricity learning process;
2) Mobilizing Kenyan wind technology skills and expertise;
3) Progressive school staff training to power system O&M, energy consumption management and project sustainability.

A pilot project before offering wind-based electrification solutions to all East Africa
The involvement of Esilanke Community to manage the project and make it sustainable has been very encouraging. There is a big local will to get involved, understand, participate in management and generate incomes from electricity supply. Their responsibility, demonstrated with Community's willingness to pay and create the conditions of financial viability, has been remarkable. Their ability to technically manage the system illustrates the technical viability of small wind turbine electrification project in remote areas.

Small wind turbines fit rural energy needs from households to rural institutions and small industries; even large energy consumers like tourist business would benefit from this new decentralised power generation option.
Therefore there are large market prospects for Small Wind Turbines in Kenya and beyond. Kijito Wind power aims at being active very soon to provide new wind-based solutions for the electrification and development of the rural Africa.