Today is Youth Day at The Linn County Fair. There will be many free, fun, educational things to see and do including the UNI Center for Energy and Environmental Education Power Tower. The Power Tower is a transportable 35 foot tall renewable energy system that consists of a 400 watt wind turbine, 130 watt solar array, battery, and a 35 watt LED street light. The Power Tower will be installed at the fair from today through Monday of the fair. Educational opportunities for youth and adults include collecting and analyzing weather and energy data and exposure to renewable energy production up close.
Advancements in wind and solar technology, rising fossil fuel costs, and increased environmental awareness has caused wind and solar to become two of the fastest growing industries in the United States. This and the need for increased STEM literacy in Iowa’s students has motivated Iowa teachers to involve more hands on, energy related activities into their classrooms. UNI CEEE provides STEM teachers across the state of Iowa with energy resources through its Fabulous Resources for Energy Educators free loan program. The power tower is one of those energy resources. In 2011, UNI purchased their first power tower using a grant from Alliant Energy. Since its acquisition, the Power Tower has been installed at several different locations across eastern Iowa. The Power Tower is a FREE resource available to schools through UNI’s CEEE Fabulous Resources for Energy Educators free loan program. Through activities incorporating the Power Tower, UNI CEEE aims to increase student and community awareness about renewable energies, provide students with opportunities to work with expensive, high tech equipment, and provide a context for other energy and power related curricula.
The Center for Energy and Environmental Education is located in Cedar Falls, IA. For more information go to www.uni.edu/free-ceee