Alternative energy powers inquisitive minds

Article Published: Aug. 26, 2010 | Modified: Sep. 7, 2011
Alternative energy powers inquisitive minds

Students from Green Valley Elementary School learned about renewable energy during a visit to Appalachian State University. The university's Wind Applications Center provides tours to school groups to the various renewable energy projects on campus.

Photo by Lauren Salisbury

Local school groups often tour the various renewable energy projects at Appalachian State University.

The tours are conducted by Appalachian's Wind Applications Center, which is part of the Department of Technology's Energy Center. Stops include the university's wind turbine near the Broyhill Inn and Conference Center, the biodiesel processing facility off State Farm Road, the energy efficient model dwelling located on Rivers Street and the photovoltaic array in front of Raley Hall.

The students also see how solar thermal panels are tested in the Department of Technology. And they can make their own electricity to light a light bulb by pedaling a bike that's connected to a generator.

Students learn why alternative and renewable energy is good for the environment and how the technology plays an increasingly large part of consumers' energy use, a spokesperson for the center said.

For more information about the tours, e-mail ( or call (828) 262-7333.

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