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  • Writer's pictureSeraphine Dogbey

South African teenagers who built a plane in 10 days

With the aid of a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), U-Dream Global, 20 South African teens built a plane from scratch in 2019.

One of them, Agnes Keamogetswe Seemala built the horizontal and vertical stabilisers as well as the fuselage.

The finished four-seater aircraft was flown from their capital city Cape Town to Cairo in Egypt by 7-year-old pilot Megan Werner.

Speaking to BBC Africa's children's programme, BBC What's New they said they were doubtful the plane would fly as it was just a model.

18-year old Rosego Moroka built the central fuselage also known as the cockpit. (Where the pilot sits)

Lesego Ngoasheng was also part of the team of 20 young engineers. The 16-year old was tasked to build the tail of the aeroplane.

According to her "Because we are living in a society that stereotypical especially when it comes to teenagers, a lot of people were actually shocked like; "What are they doing? This was just a dream it was going to fail'.

It took three weeks to make the plane form a kit manufactured in South Africa by the Airplane Factory. This kit came with thousands of small parts that had to be assembled.

They admitted it was a difficult task as they had to read from engineering manuals and have "a 3D type of brain'. Another struggle they faced with using the required tools as it was their first time.

These were coupled with learning to work as a team throughout the duration of the project.

"If we can build a plane, you can build a spaceship. You can do whatever you want to do," Agnes advised.

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