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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/R035822/1
Title: Catalysing energy access in Africa through smarter energy storage management
Principal Investigator: Howey, Professor D
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Engineering Science
Organisation: University of Oxford
Scheme: Technology Programme
Starts: 01 January 2018 Ends: 31 December 2018 Value (£): 98,450
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Energy Storage Sustainable Energy Networks
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Energy
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
This project enables the remote, automated management of distributed off-grid batteries powering solar home systems throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The research has two objectives: to examine solar home system (SHS) usage data to design smarter appliances for off-grid customers; and to optimise lithium ion battery (LIB) lifetime. M-KOPA collects daily usage data from >500,000 households in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), however, there is a gap in effective use of the data for product management and design excellence. Using data science tools and machine learning algorithms, M-KOPA will develop approaches to maximise product battery life, and design smarter appliances. These tools will decrease the premature LIB failure rate (one of M-KOPA's greatest challenges). Oxford University will design battery failure prediction algorithms to increase the longevity, effectiveness, and reliability of future LIBs for off-grid customers. Thus, this project targets all three aspects of the energy trilemma: reducing emissions through increased life of LIBs in SSA, cost savings through optimal product design, and security of energy supply from more reliable SHS.

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Organisation Website: http://www.ox.ac.uk