Development of Energy Efficient e-pedelec Rickshaw for Income Generation of Rural Community Through Quality and Easier Milk Handling

Main research question: Income generation through developing low cost e-pedelec rickshaw/transport trolley/e-cargo for easier handling of farm chilled/pasteurized milk and easier transportation from farm gate to consumer market.

Contact: Dr. Anjum Munir

Project aim: This project aims at the appropriate design and development of an E-pedelec rickshaw/e-cargo for easier handling and transportation of chilled/pasteurized milk and other perishable agricultural products from farms to nearby consumer markets. This will improve the living standards of small entrepreneurs and rural community by improving their income generation opportunities. This will also reduce the drudgery work of using normal bicycles for cargo applications.
Pakistan is the 5th largest milk producer in the world. This is not just a means to service commuting people, but also to collect products and materials from producers and distribute them to consumers. Transportation has become a significant factor affecting the production costs of commodities. In Pakistan, more than 60% of the population are living in villages with 95% of small farmers. The milkmen transport milk to nearby dairies or distribute it within the city using motor-bike and simple bicycles as means of transportation. The fossil-fuel-powered motorcycles require large amounts of high-cost fuels on a daily basis, increasing the costs of the milk supply as well as environmental pollution, while simple bicycles used for milk transport are hard enough to use during the severe summer and winter seasons. The inefficient transportation source and delay in milk supply to the consumers is a serious concern since it increases the production costs as well as degrades the quality of milk, which is eventually reflected in the consumer price. Moreover, using a normal bicycle as a loading application is ‘drudgery work' and does not meet the ergonomics and occupational health standards as permissible under labor laws. Thus, this project is focused on providing need-based milk handling and transportation solutions at the farm level. The design and development of a low-cost, environmentally- and user-friendly energy efficient e-pedelec rickshaw is used to enhance income generation opportunities and rural community development. The optimum design parameters involved in the development, fabrication and operation of an e-pedelec rickshaw will be investigated. Former research projects from the Department of Agriculture & Biosystems Engineering, University of Kassel, Germany as well as from the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad (ICDD and DAAD) have shown that these types of demand-based technologies easily generate small scale enterprises in rural communities. E-pedelec rickshaws will create jobs in the rural areas and therefore keep people on the countryside as opposed to leading to further urbanization.