10 September 2021 - A vaccine storage facility, known as The Kinkole Hub, has been commissioned by the Expanded Vaccination Program office of the Ministry of Health in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Built with funding from UNICEF The Kinkole Hub – which is situated in Kinshasa – is a temperature-controlled facility for the storage of medicines, in a suite of cold rooms, and a modern warehouse. The site also includes administrative offices.
The cold rooms offer constant, controllable above- and below-freezing environments suitable for vaccines requiring very specific temperature storage. Power blackout protection has been assured by choosing a private electricity supply based on solar energy. The Ministry of Health chose this option because it offers cheaper, more reliable energy. This installation was completed by GoShop – the authorised reseller of Victron products in the DRC. GoShop has designed a containerised solar-based Uninterrupted Power Supply for the site’s refrigeration plant and administration department. Power to the offices can be redirected to the cold rooms in the event of a breakdown, or to avoid a critical power situation.
The solar-based system comprises:
The Democratic Republic of Congo experiences one of the highest density of lightning strikes in the world – lightning rod protection is mandatory. The integrity of the system is further secured by a backup generator. The modern warehouse facility at Kinkole is the largest in Central Africa and has a total of 13 cold rooms including 10 refrigerated rooms, 2 freezer storage facilities, and one ambient room. GoShop has been supplying power equipment for forty years and is, today, involved in a number of large scale aid-project installations – including a 200kWh system for the World Food Programme; together with state-owned facilities including a 350kWh installation at the Presidential Palace.