Canadian Electrical Industry News Week

Tiny Home

January 4, 2018

Caleb Grove built an eight-by-12 foot house - a micro home - in six months, for $10,000.

But it's not to showcase his building skills. It's to shine a light on his scalable, and cheap, power set-up.

Powered by solar, 12 volt batteries store enough power to run lights, a laptop, and a fan in the home.

Grove has installed 40 similar systems on a small island in Africa called Mbissa.

The first place to get electric light was a health clinic. Grove says it was greeted with a hushed awe.

For almost a decade, Grove grew up on that island, when his missionary parents decided to settle their family there in 2000.

To get to Mbissa, you pass through the mainland that has a spotty electrical grid that most people can't afford to tap into. Then you get to the end of the road, take a boat, and arrive at the 3000 person island of subsistence farmers and fishers.

Grove was eight then.  At 17, he decided to get an electrical engineering degree from the University of New Brunswick. While completing his degree, he convinced various UNB funding agencies to donate more than $30,000 dollars as he went back and forth to Africa to perfect his power system.

"The people in Cameroon, have, through our technology, a plug and play system," says Grove, holding up something about twice the size of an insulated coffee mug.

"So someone who wants to put in their solar electricity, it's extremely simple. They don't need a background in electrical engineering to come up with this product."

"And so to be able to take that and do that here would be the same idea."

When developing the system, Grove said he had to make something that was cheap, could be made with local materials, and would be easy to install..

"I have to make sure that it's done so that when I leave, if I leave it will continue. So that means is that it is not the white man coming in to do work. That makes it sustainable. It is theirs," says Grove.

"And that has been a long and difficult battle. The word for electricity in their language is 'munong micra', it means 'the fire of the foreigner'. And I've been trying to tell them you need to call this 'munong Mbissa':'the fire of Mbissa,'

Grove adds: "Something that even if a foreigner is not there to give it to you, you can still do it, because you have the power, you have the tools and you have the knowledge and education you need to do it."

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/micro-home-power-system-1.4440658

 Electrician Forum Brought to You by Schneider Electric             

The Electrician Forum is a monthly column that provides valuable information to electricians and electrical contractors on current industry trends and concerns. 

Schneider ElectricSponsored by Schneider Electric

In this issue: 

Quite simply put if you feel that job site costing and quote development are a lot of work, you are right! To properly assess a job and estimate the required work time, product costs and various other expenses can take more time than is often feasible for a small company. You need to be spending your time completing projects, which can become difficult if you are spending your hours doing cost analysis. We learned this first hand in last month’s edition of the Electrician Forum when Steve Beeby of Beehive Electric discussed the balance required to own and operate an electrical contracting company.

read more...

Watch a portion of the interview conducted by Electrical Industry Canada with Steve Beeby of Beehive Electric

 

Fluke Hammon Healy

As our population grows and consumers continue to rely on technology for both essentials and comfort, the need for power quality has become vital. Fluke is a leader in this field, offering power quality training seminars, as well as employing power quality specialists with years of industry experience.

This month’s personal profile is a double feature of two of Fluke’s senior power quality specialists, Hilton Hammond and Frank Healy.

Hilton Hammond has been with Fluke since 1995, and in 2013 moved into his current position as Power Quality Business Unit Manager. He has a deep and thorough knowledge of power quality and related electrical instrumentation. 

Frank Healy, Power Quality Product Marketing Manager at Fluke since 2006, has been in the industry for well over three decades. He globally manages Fluke’s power quality products, including measuring instruments and precision power analyzers.

Read More



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 Sean Freeman

Sean Freeman is a vibrant, enthusiastic and selfless individual who has taken his trade expertise beyond that of a simple career. Not only is he a Master Electrician but he has traveled around the world as an electrical technician delegate with the Red Cross Emergency Response Unit. His skills are a vital part of emergency response and disaster relief.

In 2013 Sean responded to Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. In 2014 Sean spent almost a month in Kenema, Sierra Leone working at the Ebola Treatment Centre. There he was responsible for ensuring electricity and clean water were available, and worked to strengthen the infrastructure of the facility. 

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