Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan



Posted: August 8, 2012

IMAGINE Africa Download File(s): 09-whitepaper_2.pdf

Taking the Internet off the Grid

What do Tyra Banks, bongo music, President Obama’s speeches and the Kenyan College of Accountancy have in common?

All four of these topics were keywords for Internet searches conducted at the Nguruman Community Knowledge Center, in Magadi, Kenya, using an IMAGINE Africa ground station.

The IMAGINE Africa Project, currently administered from within the University of Michigan’s College of Engineering, has successfully designed and deployed a system to bring high-speed, satellite-based Internet connections to some of the most remote parts of the world. Pilot deployments in rural Kenya have demonstrated that our unique combination of durable off-the-shelf technology and local support are a viable model for bringing Internet connections into rural African communities.

Though our ultimate goal is deploying thousands of stations, the next step for our program is to expand moderately and allow more rural communities, like Magadi, to gain access to the economic, educational and public health benefits that can follow from Internet connectivity.

With our end goal in sight, we are currently reengineering portions of the ground station to make our already proven design concept even better and our organization is growing to provide the proper support for our ambitious aims.

Obviously such an undertaking requires significant capital and human resources. If you would like to contribute individually, or if your organization is interested in partnering on IMAGINE Africa, please contact us!

IMAGINE Africa on YouTube

Learn about the vision, how IMAGINE Africa began and the next steps in the project — all in an easy to follow YouTube "Tech Talk".

Africa Contact Information
Africa In the News
Africa Information
Darren McKague University of Michigan Atmospheric, Oceanic & Space Sciences Research Investigator; Space Systems Engineering Graduate Advisor

International Herald Tribune - New York Times Bringing the Internet to Remote African Villages published Feb 1, 2009

Voice of America News Rural Areas of Kenya Get Connected to the Web published Feb 18, 2009

U-M President Praises Project Coleman: “Advancing Our Academic Excellence” October 27, 2008

Learn more details about how you can help support IMAGINE Africa.

IMAGINE Africa prospectus (PDF File)

AOSS Daily Planet article about IMAGINE Africa students and project (PDF FILE)

Imagine Africa

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