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A Solar-Pumped Domestic 
1 10/13/2014 
Water Supply for the 
Mountains of Rural Haiti 
Eric Sabelman*, Trudy Reagan, Rose Ashford, 
Elisee Abraham, Randy Mont-Reynaud 
“If Pigs Could Fly – Helping Hillside Haiti” 
Palo Alto, California USA 
* Member IEEE-EMBS
IPCF: A micro-NGO for a specific 
locale in Haiti 
“If Pigs Could Fly – Helping 
Hillside Haiti” established in 2001 
Operates at “Mon Bouton” in 
roadless Zoranje region above 
Leogane (2010 quake epicenter) 
Projects on children’s health & 
education, income-producing 
crafts & agriculture, lighting 
On-site management by Elisee 
“Thomas” Abraham, veterinarian 
& community organizer 
Family dwellings in Mon Bouton
Need: Bring water closer to point of use 
Water is carried by women & 
children from 3 sources; largest 
is “Ouache-ouache” (circled) 
about 700 m downhill
Solar water pump design criteria 
• Provide kits of all parts not locally available 
• Assemble with simple tools (provided) 
• Solar panels positioned above vegetation & 
anchored against high wind 
• Raise water in 2 stages for 460 ft (140 m) rise 
• Length of pipe 1000 feet (300 m) or more 
• Pump 400 gallons (1500 L) per day 
• Use excess power for charging batteries 
• Engage local “watermaster” to manage system
Components & prototyping 
Two kits, each containing: 
• 180 watt BP solar panel 
• 24VDC ShurFlo 9300 pump 
• Pre-formed brackets for 
panel support tripods 
• Controller with level switch 
• Electric cables and 
connectors (pre-assembled) 
• Hardware and tools 
• Graphic instructions
Timeline 
• April, 2011 - Earth Day 
demonstration, Sunnyvale CA 
• July, 2012 - shipped two kits 
• September, 2012 - released from 
customs in Port au Prince 
• August, 2013 - construction 
began; stopped by rockslide 
• December, 2013 - construction 
resumed at new mid-level site 
• January, 2014 - water delivery 
< Power vs. pressure head
Solar panel support tripod 
• Brackets were cut, punched, 
pre-formed & labeled 
• sample with U-bolts installed 
• Bracket “F” allows seasonal tilt 
• Bracket “A” detaches to lower 
tripod in hurricane wind
Critical components: pump & panel 
ShurFlo Model 9325-043-101 
24VDC Submersible Pump for potable water 
BP Solar BP SX170 170W 
Multicrystalline Solar Panel 
Maximum power (Pmax) 170W 
Voltage at Pmax (Vmp) 35.4V 
Current at Pmax (Imp) 4.8A
Kit assembly with in-country supplies 
Purchased in Haiti : 
1. 3/4 inch PVC water pipe, PVC glue & primer 
2. water storage tanks, 300 gal 
3. concrete & cement blocks for footings & reservoir 
4. steel EMT conduit for lightning rod & solar panel tripods
Transportation to Mon Bouton 
Hardware kits (larger has toolbox) 
• Airfreight to Port au Prince 
• Truck to Leogane, then south to end of road 
• Mule & human porters across river and up
Source: reservoir at “Wach-wach” 
Workers had experience 
with block construction of 
reservoir at Bain Neuf 
Lower pumping trial before 
tripod was finished
Construction: lower tripod assembly 
Assembling tripod brackets 
with tools from kit 
EMT tubing cut to size on site 
(1 ½, 1, ¾ inch diameters) 
Partly completed tripod on 
concrete footings at initial 
lower site above reservoir
Laying pipe to mid-level site 
Initial middle site had 80 ft (24 m) 
rise from source; near footpath on 
actively eroding slope
First mid-level tank & panel site 
Rockfall after overnight rain 
damaged partly assembled 
tripod & covered footing 
After test of pumping to 
initial top site, work was 
stopped until a safe 
middle site was found
Second lower & mid-level pump sites 
Lower pump, panel & tank 
relocated to west 
Mid-level pump, panel 
& new tank at safe site
Upper tank site water delivery 
Storage tank – sign from 
community meeting held 
by Elisee Abraham 
Spigot is gravity fed from 
storage tank
Map of water system 
Mon Bouton 
Nelis’ house 
New middle site 
Abandoned 
middle site 
Source 
reservoir 
Upper site & spigot 
Pumped flow 
N 
Gravity flow New lower site
Results to date 
• 32 months from prototype to water delivery in Haiti 
• Total cost about $8100 ($3000 in US for kits & shipping) 
• Installation by 28 skilled (cement block construction) & 
unskilled workers in 6 days 
• Re-routing & re-assembly after rockslide cost $2100 
• New route resulted in better upper site, closer to users 
• Some features not installed (storm protection, charger) 
• Measured delivery of 280-300 gallons (>1000 L) per day 
• “Watermaster” Mesye Nelis oversees operation; has 
repaired breaks in PVC pipe 
• Kit components could be minimized by local metal 
fabrication; kits can be easily replicated
Height & distance measurement 
19 10/13/2014 
distance height 
traverse sine angle ft m ft m 
source to lower tank 0.042 -2.39 425.7 129.8 17.74 5.4 
lower to mid tank 0.528 31.86 308.5 94.0 162.82 49.6 
mid to upper tank 0.556 33.75 269.6 82.2 149.78 45.7
Continued benefit 
Water for bathing, laundry, cooking 
20 10/13/2014
Acknowledgements & resources 
• Jonathan Bass & Solar City - solar panel donation 
• Margaret Fruth - donation of tools 
• Jean Ronel Noel & ENERSA - assistance with customs 
& transport in Haiti 
• Other donors – technical & financial contributions 
For more information: 
www.ifpigscouldflyhaiti.org 
www.haitinextdoor.org (blog) 
www.causes.com/causes/529435-if-pigs-could-fly-haiti 
If Pigs Could Fly-Haiti 
4250 El Camino Real, C126, Palo Alto CA 94306

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A solar powered pump for water in rural Haiti

  • 1. A Solar-Pumped Domestic 1 10/13/2014 Water Supply for the Mountains of Rural Haiti Eric Sabelman*, Trudy Reagan, Rose Ashford, Elisee Abraham, Randy Mont-Reynaud “If Pigs Could Fly – Helping Hillside Haiti” Palo Alto, California USA * Member IEEE-EMBS
  • 2. IPCF: A micro-NGO for a specific locale in Haiti “If Pigs Could Fly – Helping Hillside Haiti” established in 2001 Operates at “Mon Bouton” in roadless Zoranje region above Leogane (2010 quake epicenter) Projects on children’s health & education, income-producing crafts & agriculture, lighting On-site management by Elisee “Thomas” Abraham, veterinarian & community organizer Family dwellings in Mon Bouton
  • 3. Need: Bring water closer to point of use Water is carried by women & children from 3 sources; largest is “Ouache-ouache” (circled) about 700 m downhill
  • 4. Solar water pump design criteria • Provide kits of all parts not locally available • Assemble with simple tools (provided) • Solar panels positioned above vegetation & anchored against high wind • Raise water in 2 stages for 460 ft (140 m) rise • Length of pipe 1000 feet (300 m) or more • Pump 400 gallons (1500 L) per day • Use excess power for charging batteries • Engage local “watermaster” to manage system
  • 5. Components & prototyping Two kits, each containing: • 180 watt BP solar panel • 24VDC ShurFlo 9300 pump • Pre-formed brackets for panel support tripods • Controller with level switch • Electric cables and connectors (pre-assembled) • Hardware and tools • Graphic instructions
  • 6. Timeline • April, 2011 - Earth Day demonstration, Sunnyvale CA • July, 2012 - shipped two kits • September, 2012 - released from customs in Port au Prince • August, 2013 - construction began; stopped by rockslide • December, 2013 - construction resumed at new mid-level site • January, 2014 - water delivery < Power vs. pressure head
  • 7. Solar panel support tripod • Brackets were cut, punched, pre-formed & labeled • sample with U-bolts installed • Bracket “F” allows seasonal tilt • Bracket “A” detaches to lower tripod in hurricane wind
  • 8. Critical components: pump & panel ShurFlo Model 9325-043-101 24VDC Submersible Pump for potable water BP Solar BP SX170 170W Multicrystalline Solar Panel Maximum power (Pmax) 170W Voltage at Pmax (Vmp) 35.4V Current at Pmax (Imp) 4.8A
  • 9. Kit assembly with in-country supplies Purchased in Haiti : 1. 3/4 inch PVC water pipe, PVC glue & primer 2. water storage tanks, 300 gal 3. concrete & cement blocks for footings & reservoir 4. steel EMT conduit for lightning rod & solar panel tripods
  • 10. Transportation to Mon Bouton Hardware kits (larger has toolbox) • Airfreight to Port au Prince • Truck to Leogane, then south to end of road • Mule & human porters across river and up
  • 11. Source: reservoir at “Wach-wach” Workers had experience with block construction of reservoir at Bain Neuf Lower pumping trial before tripod was finished
  • 12. Construction: lower tripod assembly Assembling tripod brackets with tools from kit EMT tubing cut to size on site (1 ½, 1, ¾ inch diameters) Partly completed tripod on concrete footings at initial lower site above reservoir
  • 13. Laying pipe to mid-level site Initial middle site had 80 ft (24 m) rise from source; near footpath on actively eroding slope
  • 14. First mid-level tank & panel site Rockfall after overnight rain damaged partly assembled tripod & covered footing After test of pumping to initial top site, work was stopped until a safe middle site was found
  • 15. Second lower & mid-level pump sites Lower pump, panel & tank relocated to west Mid-level pump, panel & new tank at safe site
  • 16. Upper tank site water delivery Storage tank – sign from community meeting held by Elisee Abraham Spigot is gravity fed from storage tank
  • 17. Map of water system Mon Bouton Nelis’ house New middle site Abandoned middle site Source reservoir Upper site & spigot Pumped flow N Gravity flow New lower site
  • 18. Results to date • 32 months from prototype to water delivery in Haiti • Total cost about $8100 ($3000 in US for kits & shipping) • Installation by 28 skilled (cement block construction) & unskilled workers in 6 days • Re-routing & re-assembly after rockslide cost $2100 • New route resulted in better upper site, closer to users • Some features not installed (storm protection, charger) • Measured delivery of 280-300 gallons (>1000 L) per day • “Watermaster” Mesye Nelis oversees operation; has repaired breaks in PVC pipe • Kit components could be minimized by local metal fabrication; kits can be easily replicated
  • 19. Height & distance measurement 19 10/13/2014 distance height traverse sine angle ft m ft m source to lower tank 0.042 -2.39 425.7 129.8 17.74 5.4 lower to mid tank 0.528 31.86 308.5 94.0 162.82 49.6 mid to upper tank 0.556 33.75 269.6 82.2 149.78 45.7
  • 20. Continued benefit Water for bathing, laundry, cooking 20 10/13/2014
  • 21. Acknowledgements & resources • Jonathan Bass & Solar City - solar panel donation • Margaret Fruth - donation of tools • Jean Ronel Noel & ENERSA - assistance with customs & transport in Haiti • Other donors – technical & financial contributions For more information: www.ifpigscouldflyhaiti.org www.haitinextdoor.org (blog) www.causes.com/causes/529435-if-pigs-could-fly-haiti If Pigs Could Fly-Haiti 4250 El Camino Real, C126, Palo Alto CA 94306