Ford Ranger

While Jorge and Maayan were conducting computer training for LGDI, our technical experts Mike and Emily were hard at work providing support for the Ford vehicle. Ford donated two Ford Rangers to World Vision South Africa and the vehicles are fitted with some incredible technology – a refrigerator to carry vaccinations or samples, a projector to aid with awareness campaigns, and microphones and speakers that can connect via Bluetooth. One of the cars is for the Mbhsahse ADP, and the other is for the Umzimvubu ADP.

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In Mbhashe, mobility is a big problem and having a truck is incredibly useful. If the area receives heavy rain, World Vision is often unable to reach many of their 40 villages because of the damage to the roads. Access to a  4-wheel drive truck will enable World Vision to continue their great work despite challenges with weather and unpaved roads.

Over the past few months, our technical team has been facilitating discussions between various solution providers. They found a couple of key partners in Nexleaf and Aeris. Nexleaf has a solution called ColdTrace that monitors refrigerator temperatures and can send alerts when the temperature is outside of the set range. In order for this device to communicate with others, it needs a SIM card. Aeris provided four SIM cards – two for each vehicle.

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In addition, World Vision is using one Samsung Tab E tablet per vehicle in order to collect data from the field. There are two different types of data being generated. World Vision needs information about the vehicle itself to determine its future viability and information about how the vehicle is helping to serve the community. In order to gather the first data set, we are using the Open XC platform. This platform connects to the vehicle and tracks mileage, fuel consumption, and other metrics and then sends the data to the tablet via Bluetooth. This information is then transmitted in near real-time to the cloud for data analysis. For the second set of data, Intel contributed to an open source Android application. This application makes it easy for the driver to track where the vehicle went and which World Vision initiative it was supporting each day. This application was downloaded to each of the tablets so that the driver is able input this information from the field.

When our team arrived in Johannesburg, Emily and Mike were particularly excited to finally see the Samsung Tab E tablets, Nexleaf ColdTrace units, and Aeris SIM cards. The two of them loaded the application onto the tablets and began working with the other technologies to prepare for integration with the vehicles in Mbhashe and Umzimvubu.

Yesterday, Mike and Emily began setting up the Ford Ranger and testing the equipment. Their first task was to install and configure the ColdTrace device. After the installation was complete, they needed to test the alert system. The idea is that this device will send alerts via SMS text messages if the refrigerator’s temperature is too high or too low, which is very important for the transport of vaccinations.  The team experience some difficulty with the first two SIM cards – the cards were not able to get a cellular connection. Thankfully, Aeris provided two back-up SIM cards that were able to connect.

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Ford Ranger

Next, our technical team tested each different piece of equipment. This included the microphones, speakers, projector, projector screen, refrigerator, power inverter, and the corresponding peripherals. The main challenge that came up was with the projector. Unfortunately, it was difficult to see the picture in the bright sunlight. Even when the projector was close to the projector screen, the picture was very light and tricky to see. Our recommendation is for World Vision to use the projector inside at a local school or church because it is portable and doesn’t require much to set it up.

9 Comments

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  1. Great to see some of the details about the truck. I wonder if using a flat screen monitor would work better than a projector. You probably couldn’t get as large an image as a projector, but it’d be brighter, less expensive, and draw less power. Good luck – I am sure this is just one of many unique challenges you will be faced with!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This vehicle sounds like it is will be a huge help to the villages. Nice that so many donations of various pieces of the puzzle were donated.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Happy to follow you guys, watching your activity is informative and interesting. Good work.

    Like

  4. Alexis Johanson June 19, 2016 — 8:17 am

    What a Great Team! Thanks for all that you do to make this world a better place!

    Alexis

    Like

  5. Alexis Johanson June 19, 2016 — 8:26 am

    Great Minds + Great Progress = Making A Great Difference! What a Great Team and Thanks for all that you do to make Positive Change in the world! Proud of each and everyone of you! Look forward to hearing more about your wonderful journey!

    Alexis

    Like

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