The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind

by Christopher Paul on February 14, 2011

William Kamkwamba is a self-taught boy who brought electricity to his village in Malawi. His parents couldn’t afford to send him to school but he still managed to learn a little math and English. Eventually, he stumbled on how to build a wind turbine while reading at the local library.

William lashed his generator to a 16-foot tower made from tree branches. His fellow villagers thought his efforts were foolish, and they teased him. But when the blades of the turbine began to spin, and the small light bulb that he had connected to the output wires began to glow brightly, they stopped scoffing. William soon installed four light bulbs and two radios in his house, and built a circuit breaker to keep his house’s thatch roof from catching fire.

His accomplishments caught the attention of journalists which brought him fame and speaking engagements. Now, he’s enrolled at a university in South Africa and is working towards empowering Africa with sustainable technology.

He co-authored a book called The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind and has a blog. You read about his work here.

via Boing Boing

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