The benefits and challenges of adding renewable energy sources to our electrical grid are discussed. Generators, batteries, and meters are used to display the power of renewable resources.
The students learn how to measure work, power and energy.
Photo-voltaic cells, wind energy,bi-directional energy flows, energy metering, energy storage, and energy use by new and old lighting are all discussed and demonstrated by RWF staff in class, The energy bike is a big hit during this demonstration.
A new concept to show students how solar and renewable energy actually works in a "real" way that the students understand. Energy camps can be set up at any of the "Hydro Hiltons" (Clam River, Crowley, or AuTrain). The students set up a solar panel system and "take the house off the grid" for 2-4 days. They find out how much energy they bring in, how much energy it takes to cook, live, watch TV, and shower. Their overuse of the solar that they bring in during the day, will cause them to lose energy at a critical time. As a group they need to decide if the solar in the batteries is enough for cooking and lights, or maybe enough for a movie at night. Plus, who needs a hot shower?