Last week was full of hyper activities. We aimed at executing our project last week because the plane of the project was actually ready for take off! Yet our engine encountered some minor technical faults, but thank God we’re all engineers on the team…yaay!!! We found out that acquiring bitumen required a stringent procedure. In Ghana, one cannot purchase bitumen without proper documents outlining the usage of the chemical.
Fortunately, our project advisor, Reverend Buchele quickly stepped in and crafted a document for the team attesting to the purpose of purchase. With the document available, our able-bodied Assistant Team Leader and our Procurement Logistics Officer traveled to Tema to purchase the bitumen.
In addition to the bitumen, we needed palm nut chaff, a traditional material used by local black smiths to melt various types of metals. Mamadou, the Community Liaison and Melvin, our Projects Coordinator were able to obtain the palm nut chaff from the Berekuso township. Yippy!!! The fire can now come alive. We got the engine running again!
Just one more thing left; plastics!!! At the inception of the semester, Miquilina, our Public Relations Officer, and her roommates have been keeping empty plastic water bottles in their room in the spirit of going green and conserving the environment. Fortunately, our plastic road idea came along and they were happy to provide us with two large bags of PET plastic bottles. What an achievement for them! We are grateful for their help. What’s more interesting is that from our research, this PET plastic when combined with bitumen and gravel produces much stronger roads compared to all other types of plastics.
Finally, I managed to shred the plastics at the Mechanical Workshop with the help of the lab technician. Hopefully, now that all materials are set we will be producing our first prototype this week. We are keeping our fingers crossed anticipating the great things to come out of this project. It promises to be exciting.
I have learnt from this experience that many hands are needed to achieve tremendous results. Everyone is important and we should do our best to maintain a sense of community within us. Together we can!!