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Varsity develops electric motorcycles and TukTuk

The use of motorcycles and tuk tuks that utilise electronic energy is gaining momentum in the country as researchers and innovators at Zetech University come up with technology meant to modify bikes into electric statuses.

The technology involves replacing the engines that run on fuel with electric ones. The initiative spearheaded by researchers Prof. Paul Waweru and Prof. Gitau Kamau seeks to help those in the transport business, specifically boda boda riders and Tuk Tuk drivers, thereby reducing operational costs.

This comes as the government embarks on the initiative to introduce electric motorcycles for the boda boda sector in the country.

“We realised that boda boda operators have suffered a lot due to hiked fuel prices and incur huge losses in repairing them. This technology will help reduce the costs of refuelling and maintenance,” said Kamau.

On his part, Waweru said they are collaborating with investors and banks to find ways of financing the mass production of electric motorcycles and Tuk Tuks.

“We are in the process of expanding our production and commercialization of these bikes and are already engaging our financial partners for the same. These innovations will provide a solution to many players in the transport industry as they will significantly reduce their expenditures,” Waweru said.

They were speaking during the University’s 5th Research and Innovation Conference at its Ruiru main campus, where other technological breakthroughs were also featured. Other innovations that the university is working on include recycling e-waste and developing software to test soil temperature and other components.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Prof. Alice Njuguna said the innovations are in line with Kenya’s Vision 2030 and Africa’s Agenda 2063.

On training, Njuguna said more focus will be on ICT to enable students to become abreast of the rapidly changing technology world and to aid innovators and researchers in coming up with new products.

She called upon students to be innovative and tech-savvy and be part of solving the challenges facing the country.

“We have strategic initiatives geared towards fostering research and innovation in the institution, including the annual Research and Innovation Conference, an innovation hub, and a fully funded Research Directorate to nurture research and innovation,” she noted.

By Muoki Charles

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