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TAHMO was invited to the annual conference of the Ghana Geographers’ Association. The association is the umbrella body for lecturers and tutors who teach Geography at the University and secondary school levels respectively in the country. The association’s conference provides a platform for them to take a retrospective look at the subject (content), teaching methods, build members capacities and discuss issues that relate to the growth of the association. The conference also provides members who have undertaken research the opportunity to share their work and more importantly, how the association can help with the national course.

This year was held at the University for Education, Winneba and were under the theme: ‘Geography- The missing link in Ghana’s Development Agenda?’ The conference was graced by the Vice President of Ghana – Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.

TAHMO was asked to make a presentation on our school2school initiative. The West Africa Regional TAHMO Representative Mr. Kwame Duah Anhwere shared with the participants the desire to help improve Climatology which is part of the Geography syllabus in Ghana and the rest of Africa by TAHMO. This has started by installing the TAHMO stations in schools across Africa and Ghana in particular. TAHMO has also developed teaching and learning materials to facilitate teaching in the schools. A dedicated website www.school2school.net has been provided by TAHMO where schools can access the data for their lessons.

Kwame at the conference reiterated the fact that the school2school platform offers the Geography teachers and their Association a crucial avenue to partner with TAHMO as they work together to get these teaching and learning materials into the Ghanaian Geography curriculum. Currently, TAHMO has 85 stations in Ghana and 78 out of this number are in schools.All host schools have been educated about the stations especially during the installation period. Though, TAHMO has the approval of GES to install in schools, partnership with the Geographers’ Association is vital since its members form part of the exam board that examines students on the subject matter.

As it turned out, the association members who do not have TAHMO stations requested for one for their schools. However they were informed that they could be connected to nearby TAHMO stations so the hosts become more of resource centres to serve the others.

We (TAHMO) look forward to a fruitful partnership with the association in the coming days.

**Written by Kwame Duah A.

The past few months have seen TAHMO install over 100 stations in various parts of East Africa.
Kenya installed 40 new stations, Malawi installed 21, Tanzania installed 6, Rwanda 15 stations. These are additional stations to the existing ones in Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. There is advanced progress to have stations installed in all corners of East Africa. In East Africa, TAHMO works closely with the National Meteorological Agencies to identify locations that have historically been underserved with real-time and accurate weather data.

Every five kilometre ($ 3) that you run and every thirty kilometre ($ 5) that you ride on your bicycle are valuable. Not only for you, but also for scientists, farmers, fishermen, malaria fighters and government agencies in Africa. Because when you download their free app, the Meter Group,  supplier of measurement technology, donates these dollars for your meters to the Trans-African Hydro-Meteorological Observatory Foundation (TAHMO).

That way, both you and the Meter Group support TAHMO in its aim to achieve a network of a total of 20,000 weather stations in Africa. Local farmers and fishermen will benefit most from the local real-time weather information and weather forecasts, that will become available through each weather station. This information is crucial, because over 75 percent of the local population is dependent on agriculture and hence the weather. Professors Nick van de Giesen (Civil Engineering and Geosciences at TU Delft) and John Selker (Biological and Ecological Engineering, Oregon State University) designed the TAHMO low-maintenance weather stations with their research teams and partners. The weather stations are mostly located at schools, so that they can also be used in educational programmes. Without these weather stations, there is no accurate weather information available in most places.

Download the free app and bring accurate weather in Africa closer with each step https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/every-meter-counts/id1185112162?mt=8

For more information about TAHMO click here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udKAu0Fr9hI

calendarTAHMO is attending various events, conferences and seminars. Do you want to know when/where to find us? Please see the list below.

Oluwatobi Oyinlola

Oluwatobi Oyinlola at the Hackaday finals

The past Summer, TAHMO ran a project under the umbrella of Hackaday. The project helped us to move forward on the lightning sensors and the more advanced usage of GPS signals. We made it to the semi-finals but unfortunately we did not make it to the finals. However, team-member Oluwatobi Oyinlola was able to travel to San Francisco to attend the finals. He writes: “It was a great privilege to represent TAHMO at the Hackaday Conference in San Francisco in November 2015. I met many like-minded people in the field of embedded systems, such as Chris Low, David Pruth and some other electronics hobbyists. I really appreciate the support of TAHMO for my participation. Unfortunately, we did not make it to the finals but is was a very worthwhile experience.”

Hacking is still very much at the heart of TAHMO and we hope we will be able to run another competition on the African continent the coming year.

P1000358For the TAHMO project funded by the first Call of the Food & Business Applied Research Fund (ARF) of NWO-WOTRO, Mr Alloysius Attah and Ms Ellen van Andel participated in a three-day-workshop on Food and Business Research in Uganda which took place from October 1 to 3.
At the workshop, several issues were discussed such as co-creation, stakeholder engagement and commercialization of knowledge. About 40 project representatives and 25 external stakeholders actively engaged by exchanging ideas and sharing lessons learned to enhance the uptake of research results derived from the projects.

More information:  three-day-workshop and TAHMO project in Ghana

Enhancing research impact for food security

NickvandeGiesen opens DGI

Nick van de Giesen opens DGI

Concrete solutions to problems in the developing world using science and technology – that’s the goal of TU Delft’s Global Initiative (DGI), which was officially launched on 24th November 2015. Nick van de Giesen, co-founder of TAHMO and chairman of the DGI had the honor to kick off the event.
The launch featured TU Delft scientists, students and entrepreneurs strolling down a catwalk, showcasing 22 projects already tackling global challenges e.g. a smart phone app that scans a missing limb, then guides the creation of a 3D-printed prosthetic; diapers for disabled children; solar powered water purification; a cheap, robust thermometer; gas stoves tailored to different global contexts. TAHMO also presented its innovative and robust weather station for sub Saharan Africa.

DGI kick offNickvandeGiesen opens DGI2
Then four international keynote speakers – Noha El-Ghobashy, founding president of Engineering 4 Change; Professor Mugendi K. M’Rithaa, industrial designer at South Africa’s Cape Peninsula University of Technology; IBM’s Dr Kala Fleming, a thought leader on water management; and Professor Lex Peters, founder of the Female Cancer Foundation – provided further inspiration, with a touch of practical advice, in their extraordinary ‘stories from the field.’ And to finish, the University’s Rector Magnificus, Professor Karel Luyben, was presented with the first copy of DGI’s new booklet:  “Science for the benefit of people. All people. Worldwide.”

More information can be found here: www.delftglobal.tudelft.nl

by Nick van de Giesen

EGU_2015The European Geosciences Union (EGU) has an educational outreach program for high school teachers, called Geosciences Information For Teachers (GIFT). Every year, workshops are organized during which teachers interact with geoscientists. As is stated at their website: “The main objective of the GIFT workshops is to spread first-hand scientific information to science teachers of primary and secondary schools, significantly shortening the time between discovery and textbook, and to provide the teachers with material that can be directly transported to the classroom.” Usually, these workshops are held at the General Assembly of the EGU in Vienna but this year there was a special workshop near Addis Ababa with 35 teachers from Ethiopia. During the 2012 EGU General Assembly, I presented TAHMO to European teachers at the GIFT workshop. This year, I did the same in Addis but now included the “build your own disdrometer” experiment. The teachers were very interested and there was a lively discussion on how we could bring further development in the classroom. Especially the question as to what extent local materials can be used for building weather stations was discussed intensely.


Teachers soldering disdrometers

The disdrometer exercise was, as always, a big success. Basically, a piezo-electric element is glued under a hard surface, in our case the glass of a little picture frame. Then the two wires from a standard mono-audio plug are soldered to the metal and ceramic parts of the piezo. The plug can then be plugged into a little amplifier with speaker after which the sensor can be tested by ticking on it. People were very eager and did not need any help with soldering, even though no one had soldered before! In a very short time, ten disdros were put together and tested. Several teachers expressed interest in repeating the exercise at their schools. It should be very simple to put together a small package with which one can perform the experiment. Most items can normally be sourced locally, such as soldering iron and tin, superglue, a hard protective surface, and an audio plug. A cheap radio can be hacked to make the signal audible. All that is really needed are some instructions and piezoelectric elements.