SA‘s Solar Turtle wins ‘Technology of the Year’ at African Utility Week Awards


south Africa’s Solar Turtle emerged as the winner of the ‘Technology of the Year’ at this year’s African Utility Week industry Awards.

The SolarTurtle is an ultra-secure solar powered MU in a box. Shipping containers are converted into small, mobile solar power stations. These SolarTurtles are designed for off-grid schools where conventional solar PV solutions will not work. In crime-ridden areas across Africa traditional solar PV solutions have failed. The solar panels are typically stolen within a few months of deployment. The problem is so severe that the Gauteng provincial government was prepared to dismiss solar power as a possible electricity solution for schools and community centres.

“What is really unique about Solar Turtle are the safety features for women working in high crime rate areas such as informal settlements, rural communities or war-torn countries of the world. That is what we are really hoping to achieve. Not just making examples for the next generation of women to follow, but doing it safely.” said James van der Walt, CEO of Solar Turtle, who accepted the award at the gala dinner on Wednesday night.

The 2017 African Utility Week Industry Awards were announced at the CTICC in Cape Town. Former South African President Nelson Mandela’s personal assistant, Zelda la Grange, delivered an inspiring guest keynote address with charming anecdotes of working with and for the legendary anti-apartheid activist and politician.

More than 750 top level power and water professionals attended the fourth edition of the African Utility Week Industry Awards gala dinner on Wednesday evening, 17 May, which honour pioneering utilities, projects and people in the energy and water industry on the continent.

click here to view the complete list of winners.


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