Aluwaine Manyonga is Young Lighter of the Year

Presentation on off grid solar lighting for education in Africa impressed judges

Aluwaine Manyonga has been named Society of Light and Lighting (SLL) Young Lighter 2020 for his presentation offering a lighting solution for schools in Africa.

Manyonga delivered his presentation, Offgrid solar lighting and chigubhu lantern, Africa’s education system game-changer, at the online event during the LuxLive Digital Festival 2020 alongside three other finalists.

His concept seeks to provide an offgrid solar lighting solution for education in Africa, where 600 million people are without electricity, and one in three primary schools affected.

The project aims to use competitive pricing of solar-powered solutions to develop a clean and reliable light source to positively impact the education system. It also proposes a means of reusing plastic and electronic waste, giving students and communities transportable, safe light sources.

Manyonga proposes an offgrid, solar, DC- powered system, consisting of solar panels, DC LED luminaires, charge controllers, batteries and charging points (5V and 12V) for charging individual chigubhu lanterns. Students and teachers would be taught how to set up and maintain the system, and USB charging points could be used for individual chigubhu lanterns and other devices.

Ruth Kelly Waskett, SLL President Elect and a 2020 judge, said: ‘The judges were impressed by the social value of Aluwaine’s project. He showed immense initiative, as well as technical know-how, using limited resources to create something that will improve the lives of a huge number of people. Aluwaine’s work reminds us how lighting can make the world a better place.’

This year is the 26th anniversary of the competition, which gives a unique platform to young lighters. Watch the finalists’ presentations at: CIBSE – Society of Light and Lighting – SLL