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Solar-powered internet cafe opens in Kenya

Pre-built container doesn't need mains electricity

Residents in Nairobi, Kenya can now get on the web, thanks to a solar powered internet café that has been built by Computer Aid International.

The Café, which has been built in conjunction with Computers For Schools Kenya (CFSK), is a pre-built container that was shipped from London. Thanks to the six solar panels on the roof, which power a thin client network and 11 flat screen monitors run off a single Pentium four PC, the container can be placed anywhere on the planet, with no need for mains electricity or wired connections.

The IT charity said the panels will provide 12 hours' worth of electricity every day and will last for up to 25 years. Meanwhile, the net access is provided by a cellular data connection.

"The solar internet café is an exciting new project for Computer Aid that enables us to reach even the most isolated rural communities," said Tony Roberts, CEO of Computer Aid.

"Computer Aid is committed to removing the barriers to ICT access in developing countries. The solar powered internet café is just one of a number of projects we are working on to provide ICT solutions for rural communities."

The charity plans to set up several more solar internet cafés in sub-Saharan Africa over the coming year.

See also: Sharp buys US solar project developer

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