Cecilia Apawu graduated from the College of Engineering of the Kwame Nkrumah College of Science and Expertise (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana, in 1989, with a BSc diploma in Mining and Mineral Engineering. She was the primary girl to achieve this diploma at a time when the variety of ladies finding out engineering was not more than 5 in a category of 200. Like all ultimate yr college students, Cecilia spent a lot of the yr on a sensible analysis venture, and she or he selected to work with the Suame Intermediate Expertise Switch Unit (ITTU) finding out the work of conventional aluminium pot casters. The data that she gained, and the enhancements she devised, helped her to play a number one function within the improvement of the grassroots foundry trade in different components of Ghana.
The casting of huge spherical aluminium cooking pots is alleged to have began in Bolgatanga within the Higher East Area of Ghana, however it has unfold to a number of different components of the nation, together with Suame Journal in Kumasi, Ghana’s largest casual industrial space and the house on the flip of the twenty-first century of greater than 100,000 artisans. Cecilia first met the aluminium pot casters in Suame however in her first skilled task she labored on the Tema ITTU, upgrading the work of the grassroots foundry males of Ashiaman, Tema’s twin city.
The pot makers use as a sample an imported iron pot reduce in two halves alongside the Greenwich meridian. The mould is product of sand. Scrap aluminium of every kind is melted down in a charcoal-fired furnace and poured into the mould. After cooling, the mould is opened to extract the solid pot. When Cecilia started her work at Ashiaman, the artisans have been reaching a 70 p.c success fee. Cecilia got down to discover why the opposite 30 p.c of castings failed, and the way the success fee could possibly be improved.
With the assistance of Charles Ashun, a veteran technician of the Tema-based Volta Aluminium Firm of Kaiser Engineering, Cecilia studied each side of the aluminium casting. As is all the time the case in such conditions, it was some months earlier than the Tema ITTU foundry may display a better success fee than the casual sector artisans, however when that time was reached a coaching programme was established and the artisans have been proven how they may obtain extra constant outcomes. One vital issue was the right number of the aluminium scrap as some varieties usually are not appropriate for re-casting. Different enhancements associated to the choice and preparation of the sand and the mould, and management of the pouring temperature of the molten aluminium.
Cecilia proved that Ghanaian ladies can engineer in addition to males when given an equal alternative. Her presence within the ITTUs, and the nice work she achieved, did a lot to encourage different ladies and alter the attitudes of males. She performed a number one function in Ghana’s ‘Girls in Engineering Programme’ of the mid-Nineteen Nineties. This transient account of her early work is revealed within the hope that it’s going to assist encourage different younger ladies to think about a profession in engineering and apply their abilities within the financial improvement of their nation, upwards from the grassroots.