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A variety of solar kits for students. And Learning about Solar Electricity! Details on the portable PV system This is a project lifted from PV sectionbut its also I think a good learning project for Solar Electricity, and when you are done, you have a useful product. Clearly the lead acid battery posses some safety issues, and adult supervision would be a must.
Kevin built a small, portable PV system to provide some power for lights, radio, cell phone charging, The system is small, simple, inexpensive, and easy to build -- a great learning system.
This is an earth-sun simulator you can build to test reflector designs or to understand sun and shade patterns on anything you can build a model of. It allows you to see the sun and shadows for any location on the earth and any season and for any time of day. By rotating the turntable you can quickly play the sun over your model for a full day and see the sun and shade patterns.
You can take readings on the model with a light meter and get a quantitative idea how much for example write a bio about yourself template reflector is increasing radiation. This is the Solar Site Survey that I recommend people do before building any project that relies on solar radiation.
I think it also makes a great learning project that: With this one small chart, you can pinpoint the position of the sun at any instant throughout the full year, and gain an understanding of the seasonal changes in the sun's path.
Just learning how to use the Sun Chart alone would make a great lesson. The "skyline" of obstacles is plotted on the sun chart to determine what times of the year and day your collector will be in sun.
The whole thing could be done as a couple one hour exercises. Coming to understand how the path of the sun changes through the seasons is a useful for everything from designing solar homes to planning outdoor activities.
It is something that amazingly few adults understand. This could easily feed into further sessions on passive solar home design, or solar electricity, passive cooling Understanding the Suns Path and Making a Sun Dial Sundial and Sun Path Lesson Lesson plan for making a sun dial and understanding the path across the sky knowledge lacking in most adults.
Omniscience Futureneering With the possible exception of the small Sterling engines, this site has nothing to do with solar, but it has some really interesting DIY projects.
It was founded on the premise that the best way to learn about anything was to design it, make it or modify it and then to use it.
My new Thermal Imaging Camera Some tests and impressions of my new thermal imaging camera I included this in the Solar Projects for Kids section because there are just so many ways one of these cameras could be used in simple experiments to understand the thermal aspects of the world around us.
They are not cheap, but are dropping in price -- maybe FLIR or Fluke has a program for school purchases? Thermal imaging cameras offer an unmatched capability to view the temperatures over a whole surface.
They are a great tool for things like improving solar collector designs. They have been almost prohibitively expense, but over the last few years have come down a lot as some entry level lines have been introduced with lower prices that have been steadily dropping.
My impressions of the FLIR so far are here I've included this in the "Educational" section because its an interesting new design where not everything has been figured out, and there are some relatively straight forward design variations that could be done and that might yield a better design not to mention a better understanding of solar thermal physics.
The build is straight forward and not expensive. Some adult supervision is needed, but its something that kids could do a lot of the work on.
Would love to hear from anyone who takes this on. The CPVC collector is easy to build and would make a good first solar project. A genuinely useful paper could be done comparing the effect of different kinds of shading on collector performance.
As far as I know, this has not been done, and would be quite helpful to people locating solar collectors. I'd be happy to publish such a paper on BIS. Gary This is a simple way to test the effect of tree shade on collector efficiency. It uses two identical collectors each with a bottle of water inside to collect heat.Every professional needs a bio but only few care to write a good one.
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