The Multifunction Platform (MFP) is essentially a large diesel engine. We have also developed a modification kit that allows the MFPs to run on straight vegetable oil. Using belts connected to the engine, it can power various attachments such as a miller, an oil press, or an alternator for an electric microgrid. The EPA grant allowed our program to turn the MFP into a pilot program, where the data from our project will be presented to the global community, who will then decide if it is worth expanding the project throughout Uganda.
Each of the MFPs services a farming co-op. Each co-op is composed five groups and each group is composed of twenty farmers. In all, each co-op is composed of approximately 600 people who are directly impacted by each MFP engine. These co-ops are not very densely populated, as the housing structures are few and far between.The housing structures at all four sites are circular mud huts with thatched roofs.
Our four current sites (Tubur , Anyara , Usuk and Orungo ) currently use Lister engines, which are big engines from around World War II – very sturdy but when they break it’s tough to fix. We are changing to Chang-Fa engines, which are little red engines that are more common in Soroti and Uganda.