Projects / AI Innovation Challenge

Identifying Optimal Spots for Solar Power in Nigeria Using Satellite Imagery

Project completed!

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AI offers great potential to increase the adoption of renewable energy. Within two months, Omdena’s AI community built an interactive map showing the top Nigerian regions for solar power installments. The solutions will provide helpful insights for the government and policy makers to take make decisions on where to allocate resources in the most effective way. 

The problem

More than 100 million people in Nigeria lack stable access to electricity. Many communities are not connected to the national electricity grid altogether. Most of them work with environmentally devastating fossil fuel, which is expensive, unsustainable, noisy, and health-threatening.

The challenge partner RA 365, a newly established Nigerian NGO, is on the mission to leverage Artificial Intelligence to equip policymakers and funders with tools to build a more positive future for these communities.

The project outcomes

The community of 38 collaborators compiled several insights and built the following solutions:

  • Comparison of nighttime satellite imagery against the geographic location of the population using the Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) program, ground surveys from WorldPop, and the GRID3 dataset.
  • Grid coverage analysis and machine-learning-driven heatmaps to identify sites that are most suitable for solar panel installation
  • An interactive map with a list of the top Nigerian regions with a high demand for electricity. 
Interactive machine learning based maap showing the electricity demand for Nigeria

Top regions: AI for Renewable Energy

Details about the challenge can be found in our blog below.

The impact: AI for Renewable Energy beyond Nigeria

Where our solutions will be used

The Nigerian NGO Renewable Africa will implement the community-built tools to survey and validate the locations before installing the solar panels. This will enable data-driven investments and policy-making and potentially impact the lives of many people in Nigeria. All solutions are reproducible in other countries.

We are thanking all community collaborators for the amazing work done!

This project has been hosted with our friends at

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