Four genius students of the Usman Institute of Technology’s (UIT) electrical engineering department have designed an equipment can generate power from storm water drains. The project can significantly help alleviate Karachi’s power woes by sharing the burden of K-Electric, the city’s sole power supplier. The cost-effective, low-maintenance electricity generation and distribution equipment, or their final-year project, is named Burraq.
Developed by, Saad Sarmad, 22, Zafeer Ahmed, 23, Abdullah Ali, 23, and Malik Muhammad, 23, Burraq, a modern hydroelectric river turbine, can produce up to 1,000 watts from the water flow of the city’s different storm water drains.
The equipment developed the by the team of four is only used in Canada for power production, where they constructed it in 12 years. Whereas, our talented students developed it in four months at a cost of Rs150,000. It runs on a very minimum flow of water either from rivers or sewage streams. It possess a unique zero debris accumulation design that surpasses all the debris or garbage coming with the flow of water.
Burraq has small turbine blades made of aluminium. It has a motor in the centre, which is its power-generation equipment. At the bottom they have attached a stand. “Its unique selling point is its light weight and portability,” said Sarmad.
The ambitious engineers have also done Burraq’s costing. Four fans, six LED lamps, a TV, a refrigerator, a washing machine and electronic gadgets generally require a total of 798 watts in an average household. Burraq can generate up to 100 watts, saving at least 200 watts.
A household with an average bill of Rs. 4500/ month can cover the cost of the Rs.100,000 machine in 20 months and then enjoy free electricity for next two and a half years.
Since Karachi Electric claims of power theft, the engineers at UIT claim that they can help generate electricity at a cheaper cost, especially for the city’s settlements near the nullahs and rivers.