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Rwanda to start using drone tech this month to combat malaria


Devdiscourse News Desk Kigali
Updated: 13-08-2019 15:51 IST
Rwanda to start using drone tech this month to combat malaria

The pilot phase will be commenced in Gasabo district before being rolled out to the other parts of Rwanda by the end of 2019. Image Credit: Pxhere

Some African countries are using drone technology in accomplishing varied tasks. While Ghana has created history by inaugurating planet's first medical drone delivery centre at Omenako, South Africa's Cape Town is investing funds to use the technology in combating crime. Similarly, Rwanda is all set to commence using drone technology by the end of August to fight malaria.

In January, the Government of Rwanda had forayed into a partnership with Charis Unmanned Aerial Solutions to utilize drones in combating malaria. Paul Kagame-led government's effort in association with a local drone technology company is intended to give its community relief from malaria-carrying mosquitos.

The pilot phase will be commenced in Gasabo district before being rolled out to the other parts of Rwanda by the end of 2019. "It is (spraying mosquitos using drones) planned to start by end of 2019. The drones are already available through Charis UAS and the Bti product is being procured," Sabin Nsanzimana, the Director-General of Rwanda Biomedical Centre (RBC) said.

The capacity of imminent drones is flying about 15 minutes on a single battery and spraying an area of 40 hectares in a single day. Such drones truly make sense where they replace labor-intensive and use of back-pack sprayers that are deemed to be inefficient.

With this capacity, Charis Unmanned Aerial Solutions' executives believe the other districts will be covered targeting marshlands once it gets a successful launch in Gasabo district.

Charis Unmanned Aerial Solutions is a local drone technology company. The drone manufacturer is using Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies israelensis (Bti), which is a bacteria found in soil and used as an insecticide that kills premature mosquitoes known as larvae, as reported by The New Times.

Before the idea of implementing drone technology, Rwanda was successful in reducing malaria cases by the application of different strategies that are being implemented under its malaria contingency plan.

Also Read: South Africa: Cape Town's investment in drone tech to combat crimes, poaching incidents

COUNTRY : Rwanda