Dr. Paul Onkundi Nyangaresi
Dr. Paul Onkundi Nyangaresi is a co-founder of the Maji Safi UV Project Group. Although Dr. Nyangaresi has a background in physics, mathematics, and electronics, the challenges of the lack of clean water that his home community of Nyamesocho rural village in Kenya faced pushed him to change his field and apply his electronics knowledge to solving water problems. At a young age, Dr. Nyangaresi lived in the forest with the Maasai community in Kilgoris, Kenya. Unfortunately, he became ill severely and saw many people die from the lack of clean drinking water and drinking contaminated surface waters.
Having been awarded a scholarship from the China Scholarship Council, Dr. Nyangaresi conducted his Ph.D. project at Xiamen University in Xiamen, China, on "The application of Ultraviolet Light Emitting Diodes (UV LEDs) for Water Disinfection." The project's findings motivated him to continue this research path and think of low-cost strategies for applying the same technology in marginalized rural communities along the tropics.
Currently, Dr. Nyangaresi is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow working under the supervision of Dr. Sara E. Beck in the Civil Engineering department at the University of British Columbia (UBC), Canada. Here, Dr. Nyangaresi is looking for low-cost solutions on how best UV LEDs can be applied in marginalized communities. Subsequently, Dr. Nyangaresi and Dr. Beck have successfully designed and field-tested a bio sand/charcoal and UV LED system for rainwater treatment at Nyamesocho rural village. This project is highlighted on the International Ultraviolet Association (IUVA) website under the "decentralized UV disinfection systems in low resource contexts."
Dr. Nyangaresi is a member of the team working on IEEE P3114 Standard for Datasheet Parameters and Tests for UV LEDs, a member of the IUVA UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Task Force, a member-at-large in the Canadian Postdoctoral Association, and a Strategic Growth Coordinator of the IUVA Young Professionals.