Amadou Dembele is a Malian inventor and electrical engineer who was revealed to the public at the 6th edition of the Salon Africain de l'Invention et de l'Innovation Technologique (African Invention and Technological Innovation Exhibition) held in Mali from October 28 to November 1, 2009. The exhibition was organized by OAPI (African Intellectual Property Organization). Amadou Dembele exhibited a miniature prototype of an electrical barge with a modular electrical system called Bargelec.
The Bargelec is a prefabricated, mobile and adjustable hydro-electric dam depending on the height and streamflow of the location where it is set up. This hydro-electric equipment is made up of three parts: a watercourse, a funnel and a barge. The pipe-shaped funnel is immersed completely in the watercourse, thus creating a reservoir. As for the barge, located above the funnel, it contains all electricity-generating equipment.
Amadou Dembele and his team conducted a study to produce 10 MW of electricity with an estimated investment of 1.06 million euros (700 million CFA francs). To produce this electric power, the Bargelec should have a length of about 30 m, a width of 10 m and a height of 5 m.
Amadou Dembele regrets it is difficult to find financial support for the entire project, or even to fine-tune / improve its current discovery. In a nutshell, it is always difficult to convince someone to accept a new idea and finance it, especially in Africa.
Given recurrent issues on outages and quality of electricity supply in Africa and the discoveries made by Africans on this field, one has the right to ask why part of the solution would not come from Africans themselves rather than always relying on external solutions!