With the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic that has caused sleepless nights for researchers in trying to find a cure, every effort has become critically necessary to rid the world of this menace.
On Friday, a student of Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo, Mr Aderinola Joshua led a team to produce Nigeria’s first Solar Powered Hand Washing and Drying Machine as part of efforts to contain the spread of the global pandemic ravaging humanity.
The machine which is solar powered is fully automated with soap and water dispensing sections.
It is manufactured to keep off this scourge if the explicit instructions the hand washing and drying machine gives is strictly followed by users.
Nigeria has recorded over 4,000 cases and being the third country with the highest number of recorded cases in Africa. The entire world is grappling with the pandemic, leaving no room for anyone to be treated elsewhere. And in fact, there seems to be no authentic or trusted vaccine yet.
In an exclusive interview with Mouthpiece NGR, some of the team members are keen on improving the capability of the first Nigerian made Automated Hand Washing and Drying Machine.
The cost effective working innovation if adopted by Nigerian government would easily be escalated to local communities across the country and by extension, African countries considering that the challenges were similar.
The team leader, Aderinola, and other team members are supervised by Mr Olaiya Olufolahan, Co-inventor, and a product of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, LAUTECH, Ogbomoso.
The system incorporates some bit of intelligence purposely fitted to avoid wastage of soap and water that is used when sanitizing.
The machine which is fitted with a censor also has a provision of Android App meant to control and check the level of soap and water as people washed their hands.
According to Mr Olaiya, the highest means of spreading the Covid-19 from research is through touch and contact. With this project, you don’t need to touch any surface before you are sanitized.
He said there’s no need to touch before you wash and dry your hands. The censor on the device senses your hand and automatically soap will dispense into your hands.
How the Automated Solar Powered Handwashing and drying Machine works:
According to Aderinola, the lead researcher, the Machine has a censor that detects every step when one wants to wash his hands.
Immediately one draws his hands closer to the fitted tap, the machine would sense the move and within a second, would dispense soap. The individual will then be allowed 15 seconds to scrab his hands, and within the next 15 seconds, water would be flowing for the individual to rinse his hands. After then, the user will dry his hands without touching any of the surface.
The prototype is not a motion censor where at every move the machine will start working. It’s a distance censor different from any like.
To comply with government precautionary measure, the system is fitted with a Liquid Display Unit (LED) that guides the user to wash his hands. For instance, immediately one places his hands below the tap, the system digitally alerts the individual that he is about to receive soap, thereafter, the person scrub his hands, and few seconds later, the water starts coming out for rinsing. Then he place his hands at the top for drying without any stress. It’s indeed an interesting step by step process.
To avoid a situation where water in the storage tank could be depleted without the knowledge of the user, the system is fitted with four light display alerts of green, yellow, black and red colours, where green would signify that the water is Ok, yellow soap water is low, and red, empty tank that would require filling up.
While commenting on the innovation, a staff from Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, LAUTECH, Ogbomoso, said the project was meant to strengthen the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
He thanked the team for being able to manufacture the first Nigerian made Automated Hand Washing and Drying Machine within very short time.
The lecturer said the machine is solar powered, energy conserving and cost saving. The machine is automated and can serve many people at a go, while upholding physical distancing.
He appealed to government, banks, schools and other public gatherings to get the machine to encourage the students in more research works.