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Student on the cutting edge of innovation

What started as a passion has become a career for 24-year-old Anthony Mwangi. In the course of his study, he has developed at least six technology projects, earning him cash and fame.

He started to experiment with GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) technology way back in primary school and by the time he was in second year at the university, he had developed a digital speed governor for EKAS, a Nyeri-based manufacturer dealing with a variety of tracking devices, speed governors and solar energy systems.

He has since established his own company, K-Technics for developing, selling and installing such GSM-related projects. In a month, he can make up to Sh100,000.

The fourth-year electrical engineering student at the University of Nairobi developed an integrated smart security system in his latest endeavour.

The system is mobile operated and apart from monitoring and alerting people what is happening in their premises or controlling appliances at home such as television, fridges, radio, gates and lights, it is able to irrigate remotely.

He recently installed the device at Sunculture solar-powered drip irrigation company. The project is in its pilot stage.  “I designed it from scratch and then developed and installed it for the company. I got good money from it,” he said.

The smart security system is mobile operated through GSM interface which utilises Bluetooth connectivity or the ordinary communication network.

It can be customised, depending on the needs of clients to utilise SMS commands, Bluetooth-enabled smart phones or a computer.

It is fitted with all sensors necessary for a security system including motion, vibration, temperature and moisture.

It is on this ground that he was contracted by Sunculture to design, develop and install the system which he did between July and October 2013.

“It does automatic water control and temperature regulation during irrigation which enables a farmer to work on his farm without being necessarily physically present,” he said.

Mr Mwangi also did a vending machine GSM project for Craft Silicon, a financial solution provider in banking software, microfinance software, mobile and switch solution.

The system utilises a code via phone application software to be able to access drinks and snacks from a vending machine.

He has also done Bluetooth display application which utilises an LCD screen to relay information to staff instead of pinning messages on notice boards.