African innovation is not yet getting the level of global recognition and support it truly deserves. The continent is brimming with a rising new generation of bold, creative-thinking innovators and entrepreneurs who are constantly inventing and developing new technologies that will simplify our daily lives and transform societies- technologies with global appeal and commercial viability in any part of the world. They deserve a closer look, and it’s time you took notice.
Here are 7 of them you need to know.
Mubser – Country Of Origin: Egypt
Mubser is a breakthrough navigational aid tool designed for visually-impaired people. It is a wearable belt with a Bluetooth-connected headset that guides blind people to move and navigate around common obstacles such as walls, chairs and staircases in a safe and easy way. Mubser recognizes these obstacles by leveraging on RGB imaging and infrared depth data captured by a 3D depth camera and quickly notifies the user through an inbuilt audio device and vibration motor. Mubser was developed by Khaled Shady, a 22 year-old Egyptian student and a group of computer engineering students at Menoufia University, Egypt.
Mellowcabs – Country Of Origin: South Africa
Mellowcabs are high-tech electric pedicabs manufactured from recycled materials. These vehicles primarily provide first and last mile public transport in urban areas, thereby filling the gap for commuters who need micro transport within a 3 km radius. Mellowcabs have the ability to provide more than 100km of transport per day and feature cutting edge technologies like regenerative braking, Hydrogen fuel cells, illuminated body panels, human powered charging and on-board tablet computers which feature Mellowcab’s own proprietary software which includes augmented reality facility, geo-activation advertising and full social media integration features. The Mellowcab was developed in South African by South African serial entrepreneur Neil du Preez.
Cardiopad – Country Of Origin: Cameroon
The Cardiopad is a touch screen medical tablet that enables heart examinations such as the electrocardiogram (ECG) to be performed at remote, rural locations while the results of the test are transferred wirelessly to specialists who can interpret them. The device spares African patients living in remote areas the trouble of having to travel to urban centers to seek medical examinations. The Cardiopad was invented by Arthur Zang, a 26 year-old Cameroonian.
ViViFi Touch Sticker – Country Of Origin: Egypt
ViViFi touch sticker is a human-object interface that can transform non-conductive surfaces with limited thickness such as wood and glass into touch sensors or screens that can interact with human contact through sticking ViViFi’s transparent stickers on the surface’s opposite side. In other words, you can place ViViFi’s touch sticker under any surface to convert it into a touch feature surface. The ViViFi touch sticker, which is water-resistant basically relies on human electrostatic energy in such a way that when there is physical contact between a human body and an insulating surface, the sticker senses the movement and position of the human contact and transmits it through a Wi-Fi environment into the main controller, which subsequently order actuators to take the matching action. This technology can be applied to light switches, medical devices and books. ViViFi was created by Egyptian engineer Haitham Desoky.
Saphonian Zero-Blade Wind Convertor – Country Of Origin: Tunisia
The Saphonian is a bladeless wind turbine that leverages on sailboat technology to produce energy by harnessing wind through a sail that follows a non-rotational back-and-forth 3D motion. The sail channels the wind in a back and forth motion and then converts the kinetic energy into mechanical energy using pistons. The pistons subsequently convert the energy to a hydraulic pressure that can be stored in a hydraulic accumulator or converted into electricity using a hydraulic motor or generator. The Saphonian was created by Saphon Energy, a Tunisian start up founded by Hassine Labaied and Anis Aouini.
SavvyLoo – Country Of Origin: South Africa
SavvyLoo is a pedal-operated, self contained, easy to assemble waterless toilet that features a conical disc that separates urine, diarrheic and other liquids from solids. Designed specifically for rural communities and South Africa’s informal settlements, SavvyLoo drains liquids and diarrheic waste into a soak-away through a central liquids sump while solid waste is desiccated using heat absorbed from the sun and airflow which helps it dry quickly and eradicate pathogens and odors.
The Malaria pf/PAN (pLDH) Test Kit – Country Of Origin: South Africa
The Malaria pf/PAN (pLDH) Test Kit is a rapid medical diagnostic test kit that detects all strains of malaria indicates within 30 minutes whether the Malaria treatment provided is effective. The test kit is one of only nine developed globally and is the only test of its kind fully-owned by an African company.