Uganda Communications Commission

Uganda Communications Commission (UCC)

Over 40,000 students in rural Uganda at 113 solar classrooms have access to a computer and transformational software for the first time

  • Client

    UCC

  • Country

    Uganda

  • Category

    Education

  • Dates

    October 2011

  • Products

    • 1,243 Aleutia T1s
    • Solar Classroom in a Box

The Challenge

Providing ICT access to more than 40,000 students at 113 schools in rural Uganda

In 2011, the Ugandan government made a promise to provide ICT access to all of the country’s 5000 schools, a project to be managed by the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC).

The vast majority of these schools are in remote areas without any access to electricity. UCC needed a solution that was affordable and could run on solar.

Early pilot programmes had used the Asus EEE box, a low power nettop based on Intel’s Atom processor. These however depended on a fan to keep cool and used a hard drive for storage – moving parts that were prone to failure. The case was plastic and the power supply was 19V instead of 12V.

Solution

Aleutia worked closely with UCC in Kampala to replace the Asus EEE box with a more fit-for-purpose Aleutia T1, a fanless computer designed to handle areas with lots of dust. The T1’s 8-20V DC input meant it could also run directly from 12V batteries without requiring an AC inverter or a DC 12V regulator.

Aleutia’s local partners provided solar panels and installation expertise and Aleutia’s Solar Classroom in a Box solution, with 10 x T1 computers and 12V monitors, was installed at each school.

Since 2012, Aleutia has provided this solution for every UCC rural school, over 113 schools as of October 2013 and counting and 1243 computers and servers, all running on sustainable solar power.

The mobile phone revolution in Africa has created enormous revenue for carriers and 1% of that revenue goes to the Rural Community Development Fund, which pays for these solar classrooms.

It’s the phone calls of Uganda’s millions that are providing ICT access to their children, rather than being funded by foreign aid.