Appropriate Technology Technical Notes describe simple, small-scale technologies aimed at improving people's access to food, water, and shelter. Each document introduces and explains the general concept behind the technological solution, some even include instructions of how to construct your own.



  1. This group pageexists so that individuals involved in Appropriate Technologyaround the world can connect. We encourage you to share the challenges you face in your endeavors, discuss lessons and techniques learned through your experiences, and share your story!
  2. 19/04/1994 The “tubular juice pasteurizer,” as it is formally called, strikes me as an “appropriate technology” with unusual promise. It is designed for situations where a large quantity of fruit is available for a limited period of time and for which there is no ready market or where marketing is not...
  3. Ressource principale 01/11/1993 This edition covers small water supply systems, renewable energy devices such as watermills and improved cookstoves, agricultural tools and implements, intensive gardening, workshop tools and equipment, crop preservation, housing, health care, forestry, aquaculture, nonformal education, small...
  4. Ressource principale 01/01/1977 This comprehensive work features specific ways in which both developed and developing countries can introduce people-oriented technologies to all aspects of society. It is a revolutionary work in that it outlines some radical economic changes which must be made in the industrial world.
  5. Ressource principale 02/04/2003 This book is an all-in-one "hands-on guide" for nontechnical and technical people working in less developed communities. It has been developed and designed with a prestigious team of authors, each of whom has worked extensively in developing societies throughout the world. This field guide...
  6. Ressource principale 19/01/1999 Amazon.com Description The introduction of technology into developing communities around the world is closely tied to the everyday jobs of international aid workers, engineers, health professionals, social workers, and members of religious organizations. A majority of people involved with...
  7. 09/08/2016 Vacuum-sealing seeds is highly effective, but the technology to do it is often out of the reach of small-scale farmers. This one dollar solution can help small-scale farmers store seeds more reliably, improving seed viability and reducing loss. This research was done in Cambodia as part of "Seeds...
  8. 14/06/2014 This article is from ECHO Asia Note #21 Wanpen’s roller planting marker was developed from her experience. When a problem occurred, she would alter and develop the tool according to the problem and rice variety. Wanpen’s tool was designed to be lightweight, easy to handle and convenient to use....
  9. 09/02/2017
  10. Farming with raised planting beds is a great way to keep your crop safe and increase your yields. This agricultural technique reduces soil compaction and improves the quality of the soil. It protects your plants during times of excess rainfall. This animation describes how to implement this...
  11. Drip Irrigation is a technique that allows you to consistently water your entire crop. This technique is especially helpful during a drought or dry season. This technique must be combined with Raised Planting Beds. Please watch our animation on Raised Planting Beds before attempting Drip...
  12. This animation explains a method to test if your grain has a low enough moisture level for you to store it. This technique utilizes salt to help determine the moisture level in your grain. Scientific Animations Without Borders (SAWBO) is a Michigan State University based program. SAWBO transforms...
  13. Shea butter is an ivory colored or yellowish fat that is extracted from nuts of the shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa), which is found in West Africa. Shea butter is used in cosmetics including moisturizer as well as foods such as chocolate. Additionally, it has been used in medicinal ointments....
  14. Cassava is a staple food for over 800 million people in approximately 80 countries, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa, but also in Asia, the Pacific and South America. Cassava contains cyanogens, which protect against pests and predators by producing cyanide. So-called bitter varieties produce more...
  15. Cowpea bruchids (Callosobruchus maculatus) can cause damage to cowpea (Vigna unguiculata) seeds in storage, resulting in post-harvest losses. In the animated video we describe a solarization technique for killing cowpea bruchids before the seeds are stored. Scientific Animations Without Borders...
  16. This animation explains how to avoid insect damage when storing beans after harvest using a locally available, airtight container. Beans can be stored in an airtight container for long periods of time safely. The container being used must be completely clean and free of any contaminants. It can...
  17. This video explains how to dry grains after harvest by building a low-cost High Velocity Solar Grain Dryer. Drying grain is important because it reduces the chance for mold growth in the grain, which will increase its storage life as well as ensuring that it will sell at a higher price. When you...
  18. This video explains how to dry grains after harvest by using the High Velocity Solar Grain Dryer. Drying grain is important because it reduces the chance for mold growth in the grain, which will increase its storage life as well as ensuring that it will sell at a higher price. Instructions on how...
  19. Ressource principale 01/01/1999 Women are critical to the well-being of farm households. Aside from raising children, women are expected to prepare all meals, maintain the homestead, and assist in crop and animal production, all the while tending to the general health of their families. Perhaps, ironically, it is because women...
  20. Ressource principale 19/01/1995 Small-scale vegetable oil extraction presents the options available for processing a range of common oilseeds from domestic to village scales of operation. Details are provided on the type and source of equipment, and the requirements for financial success are examined. 2 Copies
  21. Ressource principale 01/06/1992 Tools for Agriculture is a guide to small-scale farming equipment which offers information to smallholder farmers, development workers, and manufacturers all over the world.
  22. Ressource principale 01/06/1985 This 3rdedition of an invaluable and well-established ‘Buyers’ Guide’ now offers a wider range of tools, more guidance to the buyer and user, and clearer presentation of material. An additional feature is the series of expanded introductions to each general subject area. The material for the new...
  23. Ressource principale 01/01/1973 This book teaches the artist and craftsman how to make his own tools: how to design. sharpen. and temper them
  24. The alternative to digging a pit is to stack the wood above the ground and cover the stack with earth. This method is also very old and is widely used in many countries. One finds many variations of the basic method. Studies have been made in some countries to optimise the design. The Swedish...
  25. 26/03/2015 There is abundance in the ordinary – that which is often unseen or overlooked – that can be harnessed to change mindsets, resource use, and community benefits. Beth Doerr presents examples, experiences and thoughts that enlighten, challenge and guide communities to discover the abundance in their...
  26. Formerly Compatible TechnologyInternational (CTI) We believe that a world without extreme poverty is entirely possible, and for us, it starts with providing tools for communities that are traditionally overlooked by mainstream engineering. We design tools in collaboration with smallholder farmers...
  27. Our philosophy is that of George Washington Carver, an African American scientist who taught sustainable agriculture to poor farmers. Through experimentation of plants, he developed hundreds of uses for peanuts and other plants. Although most-well known for these inventions, Carver served his...
  28. KickStart International is a non-profit social enterprise with a mission to lift millions of people out of poverty quickly, cost-effectively and sustainably. KickStart’s vision of success is to take millions of people out of poverty sustainably, and in doing so, to change the way the world fights...
  29. This page is to be an inspiration, reference and source of information for independent scythe projects in the developing world. It illustrates with different projects how scythes may be applied in various ways toward sustainable development, depending on the circumstances of the working area....
  30. 19/05/1998 Advice about milling lumber from tropical trees.
  31. Soda Bottle Wick Irrigation |improves upon traditional drip irrigation in several ways. 1) Most of Lima’s soils are sandy and don’t hold water for extended periods. As a result, intermittent watering results in significant water loss; the water drains quickly through the soil before plants can...
  32. Vision: That development for the 1.6 billion people worldwide without access to affordable, healthy, efficient, and environmentally responsible lighting and energy can be promoted through the provision of sustainable energy and lighting solutions. Mission: LUTW is an international development...
  33. The Centre for Water Resources Development Management (CWRDM) here has developed wick irrigation technique, a hydroponic system, to facilitate farming of potted vegetables and ornamental plants in the homesteads and on the terrace. Dr Kamalam Joseph, a senior scientist at CWRDM who led the team...
  34. 11/09/2012 This story traces the evolution of LifeTrac, OSE's open source tractor, from 2008 to 2012. If you're interested in LifeTrac, you can find our information and designs at http://opensourceecology.org/wiki/Civilization_Starter_Kit_DVD_v0.01 Open Source Plans
  35. HARVEST - Holistic Access to Research on Vegetables, Economies, Societies, and Technology Searching over 50,000 records in the World Vegetable Center archives.
  36. Ressource principale 19/01/1993 This guide is designed to help skilled blacksmiths who have little or no teaching experience to train others in forge work techniques, using easily obtainable equipment and scrap metal to produce tools such as hoes, sickles, hammers and axes. There are 16 lesson plans with advice on teaching...
  37. Creole Document - Appropriate Technology for Farmers
  38. Ressource principale 01/12/1993 Starting with only an anvil and a few basic tools, almost all the tools needed by a blacksmith can be made from commonly found materials. With clear instructions this book gives step by step instructions on basic blacksmithing.
  39. Ressource principale 01/05/1993 This guide for carpentry instructors includes detailed plans for practical demonstrations, and important theoretical aspects of the craft. The tools include planes, clamps, workbench and vice. There is also a section on basic blacksmithing techniques.
  40. Ressource principale 19/01/1976 Volume 1 A guide to practical plans and books for village and small community technology. Critical reviews of selected publications on alternative sources of energy, farm implements, shop tools, agriculture, low-cost housing, health care, water supply, pedal power, philosophy of appropriate...
  41. 01/01/1988 This book, by the Volunteers in Technical Assistance, is a how-to book on village technology. It contains photos, diagrams and directions on how to make various technologies for water, health, agriculture, food processing and construction. 422 pages, illustrated 2 copies
  42. The “Hippo Water Roller Project” was established in 1994 in response to the unique needs and constraints in terms of access to water of rural women and children across Africa. Now simply referred to as “Hippo Roller”, the broad social impact of this social enterprise has been felt in more than...
  43. Maya Pedal is a Guatemalan NGO based in San Andrés Itzapa. We accept bikes donated from the USA and Canada which we either recondition to sell, or we use the components to build a range of "Bicimaquinas", (pedal powered machines). Pedal power can be harnessed for countless applications which...
  44. By improving transport and infrastructure, those without the means to previously do so are able to access markets where they can buy or sell goods for income, make better use of essential services such as health and education and keep abreast of social, economic and political developments...
  45. Over 1.1 billion people lack access to safe drinking water and 2.6 billion people lack adequate sanitation. These are basic human rights. Many low-cost, community-run schemes can be set up to improve health, wellbeing and environmental conditions, and generate some income.
  46. Practical Action uses technology to challenge poverty in developing countries. We enable poor communities to build on their skills and knowledge to produce sustainable and practical solutions. Technologyis a key to ending poverty. Technology doesn’t mean just physical infrastructure, machinery...
  47. We haveover 2000 online resourcesavailable, including technical briefs and drawings, and audios and videos, on a range of topics and sub-topics, and in different languages. The resources are all focused on small-scale appropriate technologies aimed at improving access to infrastructure and...
  48. The Johnson-Su Bioreactor method of creating compost is quite different from other composting methods in several respects. The most common commercial windrow composting processes are usually designed and operated for speed and maximum product flow. Unfortunately, this focus does not allow the...
  49. 01/12/1994 This book examines the contribution of rural manufacturing to central Africa economies, particularly as a service to the agricultural base. Foreign imports and the large-scale centralized manufacture of goods require scarce and expensive foreign exchange, and are therefore an inappropriate means...
  50. Compilation of 35 lectures taught at the University of Florida Agriculural Engineering Department
  51. 01/11/2008 The Human-Powered Homeis a one-of-a-kind compendium of human-powered devices gathered from a unique collection of experts. For those who want to apply their own ingenuity, or for those who have never heard of human-powered machines, this book is a fine reference. For those who are beginning to...
  52. 20/06/2019 100 Under $100: Tools for Reducing Postharvest Losses is a comprehensive compilation of postharvest techniques covering every step of the smallholder Value Chain, enhanced with lively descriptions, pertinent links, engaging stories, data-rich tables, and stunning photos. These all build and...
  53. 19/11/2019 Session :With 90% of the world’s engineering focused on 10% of the population, a significant opportunity exists to serve the most vulnerable and marginalized people in developing countries. Many attempts have been made to develop so-called appropriate technology, with some success, and much...
  54. 20/11/2019 Session :The Horticulture Innovation Lab has worked to scale appropriate technologies across the globe for over a decade. Fruits and vegetables, while producing healthy products and sound investments, can have unique challenges. This talk showcases technologies to mitigate these challenges, while...
  55. David Macaulay not only demonstrates how machines do what they do-from the simplest lever to the smartest phone-but also shows how the concept behind another. Using the humorous analogy of a wooly mammoth to illustrate principles, he offers even the least technically minded reader a window of...
  56. Micro-hydro is a useful way of providing power to houses, workshops or villages that need an independent supply. For many remote areas beyond the reach of a national grid, micro-hydro is the only economic option. Where flow is limited, but high heads are available, the Pelton wheel is one of the...
  57. Presents an overview of the use of wind energy around the world providing information on planning, purchasing, siting, and installing a wind system and the integration of wind power with solar photovoltaics
  58. Session:With 90% of the world’s engineering focused on 10% of the population, a significant opportunity exists to serve the most vulnerable and marginalized people in developing countries. Many attempts have been made to develop so-called appropriate technology, with some success, and much...