A small correction to the boingboing post

I noticed in the last couple of days that my incoming traffic spiked because my I2CAP post got linked by a bunch of places including boingboing so I went to take a look at their post just to see what it said. One of the things I noticed was a mention of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commision as an “old Soviet era research nuclear reactor” and I figured I might as well correct that impression.

As you can tell from the link, it is very much an existing institution. It was founded in the early 60’s as part of Kwame Nkrumah’s plans to modernize the country and hugely improve our competitiveness in science and technology. This is also the same reason KNUST was founded.

At the moment it houses a small research reactor which still sees use and a larger gutted out building which was meant to be a functional power producing reactor and was weeks away from being operational when he was removed from power.

At the moment it is very much a functional, if underfunded, research institution that actually does interesting work. I’ve met some of the people there and been privileged enough to do some work for them and for the graduate School of Nuclear and Allied Sciences which started working last year.

I know the idea of actual interesting scientific research being done in Africa by Africans is the kind of stuff that hardly gets noticed or commented on, even by us, but it does happen and this is a good example of the kinds of places where it happens

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2 Comments on “A small correction to the boingboing post”

  1. Bill Bliss says:

    I was the person who took the picture and who wrote the comments on Boing Boing.

    I didn’t mean to give the impression that the reactor wasn’t functional. The person I was traveling with, an American who’s currently living in Accra (the associate director of development for Ashesi University in Labone), told me that the reactor was functional today and that research was still ongoing. So I did know that, but I didn’t make it clear.

    Sorry to give the wrong impression!

    Bill Bliss

  2. kwasi says:

    No problem Bill. Its just one of those things I prefer to make clear because I find that scientific and research activities in Africa tend to live in obscurity even to Africans.

    Ashesi is a great school by the way. I work not too far from it.


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