Development of Sunflower pump

The Sunflower pump has been developed to provide smallholder farmers with an affordable and sustainable way to bring water to their fields. The solar panel captures the sunlight and converts it into electricity which drives the pump. The pump comes in a suction version (up to 7m).

The capacity on a clear day is maximum 13 m3/day when lifting from 4m. The capacity can be increased by adding a second solar panel. Assuming a crop requirement of 5l/, this capacity is enough to serve a field of 2500 m2 and 800 m2 respectively.

The Sunflower pump (which later changed name into the SF1 pump) is the predecessor of the SF2 pump that is currently produced and distributed by Futurepump ltd (UK) with technical support from PRACTICA.


In the long term the goal is to provide farmers in developing countries with access to this technology so that they can increase their income and at the same time increase food production.

The Sunflower is presently marketed in Kenya and field tested in Ethiopia, Nepal, Honduras, Zambia and Burkina Faso. The field test experiences will be fed back into the design to improve the product.


  • Refine the design
  • Supervise the production in India
  • Follow up on the field trials in Ethiopia, Nepal, Honduras, Zambia and Burkina Faso.


  • Liberty foundation: three grants with a total value of €101,000 have supported the design phase of the Sunflower pump and the elaboration of a business plan to introduce this pump on the Ethiopian market.
  • IDE Powering Agriculture grant, €100,000 for 2014 and €50,000 for 2015.
  • IWMI LIVES project, €7,000 for pilot in Awassa, Ethiopia.
  • USAID Grant, through Futurepump UK a further €75,000 over the period 2016-2018.


The SF1 pump that has been developed and tested is affordable, economically viable and suits the needs of smallholder farmers in developing countries. The pump has been produced by Futurepump India ltd at a rate of 100 pumps per month.

Since 2018 an improved version of this pump has been taken into production: the SF2. This pump is now produced at a rate of 600 pumps/month.  Please contact Futurepump Ltd for distribution enquiries.

  • solar irrigation pump
  • maintenance solar pump
  • training solar pumps
  • solar irrigation fabrication
2013 - 2015