More
    HomePartner ContentAfrica Prize for Engineering Innovation Awarded to Esther Kimani for Crop-Saving AI Tool

    Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation Awarded to Esther Kimani for Crop-Saving AI Tool

    Published on

    spot_img

    Esther Kimani, a Kenyan innovator, has been awarded the prestigious Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation for her groundbreaking invention that uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to detect and identify crop pests and diseases early on. This marks the 10th anniversary of the award and the third time a woman has been recognized as the winner.

    Kimani’s solar-powered device, which utilizes advanced cameras and computer vision algorithms, provides real-time alerts to farmers within seconds of detecting any potential threats to their crops. The device also offers tailored intervention suggestions and alerts government agricultural officers, contributing to a more comprehensive approach to crop management.

    This innovation is particularly significant for smallholder farmers in Kenya, who often lose a substantial portion of their crops due to pests and diseases. By providing early detection and targeted solutions, Kimani’s invention has the potential to reduce crop losses by up to 30% and increase yields by as much as 40%. The device is also remarkably affordable, leasing for just $3 per month, making it a cost-effective alternative to traditional detection methods.

    The Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation, founded by the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2014, is the continent’s largest prize dedicated to supporting African innovators who are developing sustainable and scalable engineering solutions to local challenges. Over the past decade, the Prize has supported nearly 150 entrepreneurs from 23 countries, who have collectively created more than 28,000 jobs and benefited over 10 million people across Africa.

    The other finalists for this year’s award were:

    • Eco Tiles (Kenya): An environmentally friendly roofing material made from recycled plastic.
    • La Ruche Health (Côte d’Ivoire): An AI-powered chatbot that provides communities with access to vital health information, advice, and services.
    • Yo-Waste (Uganda): A location-based mobile app that connects homes and businesses with independent agents for on-demand rubbish collection and disposal.

    The Africa Prize not only provides financial support to the winners and runners-up but also offers a comprehensive eight-month training and mentoring program to help them accelerate and strengthen their businesses. Additionally, the Africa Prize connects the innovators, like Esther Kimani, with a global network of entrepreneurs, mentors, potential investors, and suppliers, offering lifelong support through its alumni network.

    The 2025 Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation is now open for entries, inviting individuals and small teams living and working in sub-Saharan Africa to submit their scalable engineering solutions designed to address local challenges. The deadline for entries is October 15th.

    For more information about the Africa Prize and how to apply, visit the Africa Prize website.

    Latest articles

    Mobility Startup Zeelo Exits South Africa, Hands Reins to Ride-Sharing Rival LULA

    Zeelo, a US-based company that launched its South African operations in 2019, has decided to exit the market to focus on its core markets in the US, UK, and Ireland.

    Egypt’s dopay Secures $13.5M to Expand Digital Payroll Solutions for Underbanked Workers

    dopay’s expansion plans include the development of a self-financing lending model in collaboration with partner banks, which will leverage deposited funds to create a sustainable lending portfolio

    d.light Secures $176 Million to Expand Solar Access in East Africa

    The company’s PayGo model allows customers to pay for solar products in installments using mobile money.

    New US Parole Program Offers 5-Year Visa to African Startups with $260K+ Raised

    To qualify, entrepreneur must have a significant ownership stake (at least 10%) in a U.S.-based startup that was formed within the last five years.

    More like this

    Mobility Startup Zeelo Exits South Africa, Hands Reins to Ride-Sharing Rival LULA

    Zeelo, a US-based company that launched its South African operations in 2019, has decided to exit the market to focus on its core markets in the US, UK, and Ireland.

    Egypt’s dopay Secures $13.5M to Expand Digital Payroll Solutions for Underbanked Workers

    dopay’s expansion plans include the development of a self-financing lending model in collaboration with partner banks, which will leverage deposited funds to create a sustainable lending portfolio

    d.light Secures $176 Million to Expand Solar Access in East Africa

    The company’s PayGo model allows customers to pay for solar products in installments using mobile money.