A dissemination workshop on solar water heaters was conducted by the Clean Energy Research Centre at the University of Botswana in conjunction with the Solar Industries Association of Botswana (SIAB) recently. The workshop, which was held in early March, attracted 33 experts and professionals drawn from government departments, tertiary institutions, parastatals and the private sector.
The opening of the event was done by the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Technology of University of Botswana, Dr O. B. Molwane, with a note of encouragement to all participants to ensure they participated actively and pass the course examination.
Director of the Clean Energy Research Centre and the project leader, Dr Setlhaolo, welcomed all participants and outlined the objectives of the SOLTRAIN project and the benefits of the training towards meeting the objectives of the project. Highlights of the opening ceremony were published on the University of Botswana website.
Speaking during the closing ceremony and awarding of certificates, Botswana's Technical Coordinator of SOLTRAIN, Dr Kevin N. Nwaigwe, commended the participants for the dedication and commitment throughout the 3-day course. A total of 26 participants passed the competency exam, notable among them being Dr Mmule Magama and Ms Gagoangwe Bogopa, who both do not have technical/engineering background but are enthusiastic lovers of solar technology.
In her speech, Dr Ditiro Setlhaolo commended the participants for the time invested in improving their knowledge and skills in the area of solar water heaters. She accorded special mention to participants who came all the way from other cities such as Francistown and stayed throughout the duration of the training. Dr Setlhaolo also thanked the following individuals:
The best graduating participant, Mr Tumisang Ruda from the Department of Energy, thanked the facilitators and SOLTRAIN for the well-organized training and the depth of teaching on behalf of all participants. He undertook that the acquired knowledge be put to good use for the benefit of Batswana.
Successful participants were awarded competency certificates by Prof Jacek Uziak, a senior professor from the faculty of Engineering and Technology (FET).
Other activities of the course included a tour of an installed solar water heating system at Maru-a-Pula School and a practical demonstration of solar water heating principles using both a thermosyphon system and a pumped system.