We, the BBM, support Light for the World (LftW) in the course of a long-standing partnership in the procurement of ophthalmic equipment as well as in its shipment to the partner hospitals in the countries of the South.
In the course of this cooperation, we arranged for DSV Spedition to support LftW: With the help of the Christmas Charity Campaign of DSV and Qatar Airways Cargo, six tonnes of urgently needed relief supplies were delivered to Mozambique via air freight free of charge.
You can find more information under the following link: DSV Austria helps eye clinics in Mozambique | Light for the World (light-for-the-world.org)
The corona pandemic is making the work of the BBM more difficult. At present, trips to Africa are hardly conceivable. But the team found ways and means to advance its projects nevertheless. For example in Ethiopia, where the Bushulo hospital is being converted into a mother and child speciality centre. This is a big step towards curbing the rampant maternal and child mortality. In Ethiopia today, 353 women still die for every 100,000 live births.
For comparison: In Austria, there are four deaths per 100,000 births. The mortality rate of children under the age of 5 is equally alarming. In Austria, 3.6 in every one thousand children die before their 5th birthday. This is tragic enough for those affected. In Ethiopia, however, no less than 55 out of every thousand children died in 2018. That is five percent. The situation in the country, which is still plagued by poverty, is extremely precarious.
The reasons for this untenable situation are largely known. Many women have no possibility to reach a clinic in time. They often have to walk up to 45 kilometres to the nearest health centre. In addition, there is often a lack of medical equipment. Life-threatening complications are therefore not recognized in time – with fatal consequences for mothers and babies.
Severe consequential damage, for example due to lack of oxygen at birth, often cannot be avoided. Caritas Vorarlberg and its local partner, Caritas Awassa, support the Bushulo hospital with the BBM: A hospital for mothers and children. The aim is to increase the chances of survival for children and mothers and improve their health. The hospital was founded in 1979 by the Catholic diocese of Awassa and is currently being converted into a mother-and-child speciality centre – a pioneering project for the entire region. A wide range of medical care will be offered in the new centre:
Pregnancy care including HIV clarification, professional obstetrics, care of infants and small children (vaccinations, preventive medical check-ups, programmes against malnutrition), outpatient and inpatient care for tuberculosis and malaria. In addition, there are training courses for mothers in which practical life skills are taught: about the importance of clean water, about hygiene issues and about a balanced diet for children.
Caritas called on the BBM for technical support in planning the hospital. Many quality criteria had to be taken into account while keeping costs within a narrow framework. It made sense for the BBM to be involved right from the planning stage. In the discussion between those responsible and experts, the best possible solutions were found together.
Subsequently, the BBM supported the tendering and contracting process and took over the subsequent construction supervision. This involved cooperation with a planning team from the company Rostwa in Uganda. Then the technological core components had to be delivered. For this, BBM has a whole list of criteria that influence the purchase decisions.
For example: Are maintenance and repairs possible locally? Can the project partner afford operation and maintenance? Will spare parts be available long enough? Will the components withstand the extreme local conditions (rain, humidity and drought) and external influences (e.g. termites)? Is the technology ecologically sustainable? Are costs and benefits in a reasonable relation?
A central task is to ensure an uninterrupted energy supply for the new mother and child hospital through solar power and powerful lithium batteries. A separate power supply appears to be absolutely necessary, because power failures in the public grid are on the daily agenda. The BBM also supplied the following components:
The components will be installed by a local team, which will receive assistance from international experts and volunteers as needed. It is particularly important to pass on knowledge and know-how to local experts, who will take over responsibility for the operation over time.
In Bushulo, as in other projects, BBM does everything possible to ensure high quality without exceeding cost and time frames. The hospital should live up to the claim of being a pilot project and offer optimal health care. However, the technological complexity should remain manageable. Through COVID-19, the BBM technicians have to supervise the project from a distance without being able to be present themselves – a particular challenge for all those involved. Despite Corona, the shell of the new hospital has already been completed; work is currently underway on power and water lines. Completion is scheduled for March 2021. The hospital will then be the first and only specialist centre for mother-child health in the whole of southern Ethiopia. It will provide highly professional medical care in the fields of obstetrics, gynaecology and paediatrics.
Usually, grain mills are operated with internal combustion engines (mostly diesel), whereby people in the immediate vicinity are exposed to the high levels of noise and exhaust gas emissions. In addition, the supply of fuel can be a major problem due to high prices or lack of availability. But it doesn’t have to be like that! Solar-powered mills are particularly suitable for regions without a connection to the power grid: they are more cost-effective to operate and without CO2 emissions.
BBM delivered two solar mills to Borzanga (Burkina Faso) on behalf of Caritas of the Diocese of Innsbruck (Austria), the installation being carried out by a local team of technicians.
St. Francis Hospital in Marial Lou is the major hospital in the region. The hospital has changed their activities from an emergency hospital to become a permanent hospital for the surrounding communities. And also the number of patients has constantly increased over the last years.
The handed over structures from MSF (Médecins sans Frontières) are all non- or semi-permanent structures. The life span of such structures is normally between 3 to 15 years. Within this period, all buildings must be renewed or renovated.
The existing operating theatre is a non-permanent structure using mud bricks as walls and inadequate floor, ceiling and roof constructions. Open windows are the only ventilation system.
It is not possible to fulfil minimum hygienic standards with this situation.
The new operating theatre is planned based on international hygiene standards and norms. The major technical aspects are:
Patient handling cycle:
There is a separate patient handling cycle which allows
Equipment / Material cycle:
High quality building standard:
The building has basically two different sections: one is the centre with air condition and all other rooms are with natural air flow. The walls are made of burnt clay bricks (Uganda clays) isolation from the outside heat. The cold part of the building is made out of double walls in order to keep the cold inside the rooms. All floors are with special floor tiles and the walls with wall tiles. The inner height of the operating theatre room is 3 mts standard height in order to keep space for the special installations and head lamps.
Roof – partly a flat roof
The flat roof covers the higher part starting from the preparation room until the exit room. All auxiliary rooms are covered with a high quality corrugated iron sheet. Photovoltaic panels are covering the flat roof fully for supplying power to the cooling unit as well as the operating theatre battery system. Doors and windows: from Europe for a perfect closing and air tightness
Operating theatre ventilation system:
European standard ventilation system for operating theatre. The air pressure inside the operating theatre rooms is controlled and excess pressure does not allow inflow of dust from outside. Photovoltaic system: The proposed operating theatre is fully self-reliant, no need for the generator or any other power generation apart from installed solar array. The system is composed of 14400 WP solar field supplying 3 grid interactive inverters. For larger solar systems that generally supply to AC consumers, it is more efficient to immediately invert the solar power into AC. Therefore we call these systems “AC systems”. AC systems have higher energy efficiency in comparison to other systems. The Grid Inverter directly converts the solar energy into AC. All excess solar power which isn’t used by the AC consumers is used to charge the batteries.
The operation time in the operating theatre will depend on the scheduled and unforeseen emergencies within the hospital. Technically, electrical energy can only be harvested during sunshine, mainly between 8 am and 5 pm of a day. During this time, PV electrical energy can be used directly (light, ventilation, OP equipment, cooling compressors etc.) or can be kept in an electrical storage = battery. Cooling takes normally a lot of energy and therefore in the concept of this operating theatre, the cooling energy will be kept as cold water in a 5000 lts water storage under the floor of the operating theatre building. Night operations can be done without any need of electrical power for the cooling compressor / air conditioner.
Flicker free lights are foreseen for all rooms (energy saving)
Electrical protection circuits:
Water and wastewater:
Main Goal: To ensure the best possible level of functioning of all performances of the hospital in safe and reliable conditions, at the same time controlling and reduction of the energy costs, to can hold the patients costs further on that low. And also make the ecological footprint as small as possible.
Sub Goal: To optimise the impact of all the inventions for water and energy safety, costs and environment protection, with the help pf an integrated system for water and energy supply, but also to maximise the energy measurements.
Target Group(s): the 240.000 annual patients of the hospital and the 600 hospital employees
Activities and Contents:
Installation of a digital counting system with 70 power counters for the registration of the exact power consumption with a central data logger with monitoring and analysing software. This should make exact records about the actually needed power. Currently there is a main meter by a Ugandan electricity distribution company, where it isn’t quite sure if it is really working. But it also doesn’t tell you where energy currents mainly go to. Through the digital measurements the energy currents are going to get recorded in detail to identify power guzzlers and to minimise them.
Project running time: July 2016 – September 2018
After independence from Sudan in 2011, peace lasted only a short period of time. Since December 2013, a civil war has been raging in the country. Simplified viewed, it is a conflict between two ethnic tribes.
Since 2011, around 18 Sisters of the organization DMI have been living in the region of Wau and in the capital Juba. They help to raise awareness for peace and reconciliation between the two tribes.
The off-grid PV-solar system was designed to enable the DMI sisters uninterruptable power supply. It consists of 48 solar panels, 10 stacks of Greenrock AIB solar batteries (of 48 Vcd 2.7KWh), a backup generator, solar charger, inverters and all required accessories for installation & grounding.
The old food store was modified in order to accommodate the batteries. AIB solar batteries were chosen as they are long lasting, environmental friendly and resistant to high outside temperatures.
The Power room is including:
All equipments were connected, programmed and tested in line with the regulation. The power outputs to the different buildings are through underground cables to the different buildings and all cables are marked for easy identification.
The centre was supplied with Grundfos submersible pump SQE 1-35 for constant water supply. The pump is controlled by CU 300 together with a Potentimeter for grundfos CU 300-SPP1 to control the flow in order control the water level. The initial PVC riser pipes were reused and the whole activity was successful.
The centre was supplied with a GENMAC Generator Urban RG8PS (8.0KVA-230Vac) as a back-up power supply for the solar system as well as for the centre on by-pass. The generator is set to automatic mode with the signal from the programmable relay of the victron color control GX. The generator was supplied with the most important spare parts.
The school is situated in Rumbek, Lakes State, in South Sudan. It is the world’s youngest nation that became independent in 2011 after a war with Northern Sudan.
Due to the ongoing civil war, started in 2013, many of the already insufficient educational infrastructures have been destroyed. There is a lack of schools, qualified teachers and materials.
In March 2018 the La Salle Brothers opened outside of Rumbek a Secondary School.
BBM delivered for the school a PV-system consisting of 110 solar panels of 300Wp, carefully mounted on special roof assembly with special Schletter roof mounting accessories supplied in the consignment. One of the classroom blocks nearest to the power house was selected as it was strong enough to carry the weight of the panels.
From left to right in the above picture, there is:
The equipment is mounted in one of the offices, on a steel plate which is secured on the metal structures of the prefab building.
This consists of 9 AXI storage Lithium battery sets of 10Kw connected in parallel in a Dc combiner box mounted on the wall as close as possible to the SMA inverters.
The school system consists of three Sunny Island, 8Kw inverter/charger that provide sufficient power for two water pumps and to the school buildings i.e Class blocks, Dormitories and teachers quarters. The Monitoring is done by Powerdog and using a tablet mounted next to the inverter/chargers.
This consists of two Grundfos submersible SQE 7-40 water pumps installed in two different boreholes to the East and West of the power house. The pumps have their controllers CU300 installed inside the respective pump chambers. The pumps supply water to locally welded tanks that have their main supply to the school linked so that they are drained equally. The power supply is controlled by photocell which stops the pumps from draining the battery during night hours.
The Loreto Primary Health Care Unit is the newest of the core programs at Loreto Rumbek.
The components of the care provided at the LPHCU include:
The Pv system consist of three sections which include:
The Pv power for the internal circuits consists of 21 Axitec solar panels of 300Wp mounted on the roof using schletter mounting materials. The system is connected through string connection boxes which have surge protection devices. The Cooling unit consists of 4 Axitec solar panels of 300Wp and 2 Victron Gel Batteries. The Pv power for pumping system consist of 7 Axitec solar panels of 300Wp.
One of the rooms in the health unit was taken up for the equipments to be installed. On the wall from left to right, Ac distribution panel, Victron Multiplus 48/5000/70 – 100 230 inverter/charger, lynx DC distributor (for inverter and solar chargers), two string connection boxes, Greenrock DC combiner box ( for the AIB batteries) and finally two Victron Blue solar MPPT 150/85 charge controllers
There are 5 stacks of Greenrock AIB Aqueous ion exchange batteries (salt water batteries) 48Vdc, 2.7Kwh each that are assemble at the corner behind the entrance door for this particular room. The advantages of this battery type are that they are environmental friendly (containing no hazardous materials) and they are resistant to high outside temperatures.
This consists of two independent sets of Steca solar fridge/freezer type PF240, 12/24Vdc powered from two Victron Gel 12V 220Ah Deep cycle batteries placed on a locally fabricated battery stand. Two batteries are connected in series for 24v system. The battery sets are charged independently through Victron Blue solar MPPT 150/35 charge controller and all Pv power are surge protected in the string connection boxes mounted next to individual charge controller. The two sets of batteries are monitored independently from Victron battery monitor BMV – 700 mounted on the box.
The cooling units were programmed for the intended usage. One is programmed for freezer mode for ice blocks and other items and one programmed for fridge mode for temperature 2°C to 8°C for vaccines and drugs.
The pump control system consists of the Grunfos IO 101 Control unit and Grundfos CU 200 and surge protection devices for the float switch signal line and the Pv power. The borehole in which the pump is lowered is about 25 to 30m from the building and a separate grounding for the pump was made. The pump was lowered down the borehole by local St Peter Claver students together with their instructors both electrical and plumbing. The required training was done to St Peter Claver training centre and the management staffs of Loreto School.
The installations were done using local students of St. Peter Claver training school and a solar expert from Uganda. After installation the system was commissioned in the presence of a BBM technician.
Loreto Rumbek is made up of a primary school, a secondary school and Primary Health Care. The school first opened in 2008 and provides much needed place of education for girls aged 14-20.
To give a lot of students the chance of accommodation, a new dormitory was originated. The project start was in March 2019 and lasted till December 2019.
This consists of 15 REC solar panels 295Wp mounted on this particular building using Schletter mounting accessories and surge protection devices.
The equipment is mounted on the wall arranged for the best possible connections and professional smartness to be achieved.
A lithium BYD battery stands on the floor, fixed on the wall on its upper part to be firm to avoid any movement. It stands as close as possible next to the inverter in order to use the special interface cable between the inverter and the BYD battery system for good performance.
All equipment is wired in accordance to the standards and regulations, including grounding.
The big advantage of the Lithium BYD battery system is that it is maintenance free, unlike the lead-acid batteries it does not require occasional addition of distilled water. Only general maintenance of the power room is required: Basic Cleaning and regular checks to avoid entrance of dangerous animals especially mice, lizards and other insects that can cause tremendous damages to the system.
Please find more information about the Loreto sisters under: https://www.loretorumbek.ie/
45 packages of bananas, filled with donations in all kinds. (Bed linen, towels and dishes) In summer 2019 the filled container left the port Hamburg into the direction of Mombasa in Kenia.
Furthermore goods like solar systems and water pumps were transported in the consolidated container.
Just before Christmas the container arrived in the Guest house in Rumbek after a truck route of 2100 km and a two week long trip on partly dirt roads. With great joy and a big thanks the donations were handed over to the team of the guest house.