South Africa needs more engineers and makers

Kamau Gachigi said that by 2050 Africa’s population is
projected to have doubled and needs to build economies to
sustain that level of growth.
Digital fabrications labs such as Gearbox were vital to this, he
said.
Such labs need to start building more Africa-specific hardware,
he added.
“These labs help people become more practical and more
productive. We need many more people to develop their
potential and contribute to society.”
He spoke about how young engineer Simon Wachira had used
the lab to create a robotic tool that could cut both metal and
wood, which is now creating parts for car giant General
Motors.
Another project saw 24-year-old Esther help design sanitary
towel dispensers which can be put up in schools to avoid the
issue of girls missing school when they have their period.
And a third saw a pharmacy student design 3D models of CT
scans that surgeons can use to practise operations before they
operate on real tumours.

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