ASU Offers Renewable Energy Technologies Degree Programs

Beginning in fall 2007, Arizona State University will offer students undergraduate and graduate degree programs focusing on Alternative Energy Technologies, specifically solar, wind, ocean, geothermal and biomass, promoting the dual energy-crisis strategy of conserving efficiency as well as developing renewable energy sources.

“Alternative energy represents a powerful and rational approach to solve problems caused by fossil fuels,” said Lakshmi Munukutla, chair of the Electronic Systems Department at the Polytechnic campus. “ASU as a new American university must take a leadership role to promote and establish new energy sources.” The new program, offered by ASU’s College of Science and Technology’s Electronic Systems Department, will educate students about renewable energy sources, and prepare students to engineer concepts, components and materials, and participate in research. For the state of Arizona, the pollution-free system called the “solar-hydrogen” cycle makes the most sense, as it comprises solar energy as the primary energy source and hydrogen as a new energy vector or carrier, according to an associate professor in the program. With access to the Photovoltaics Testing Laboratory, one of three in the world, and fuel cell research on the campus, students will gain first-hand knowledge about various systems and how they work. Currently, faculty members at the Polytechnic campus are supervising 20 undergraduate and graduate students working on applied research projects and technology innovations related to alternative energy. ASU’s Polytechnic campus, located in southeast Mesa, offers degree programs through the Morrison School of Agribusiness and Resource Management, East College, College of Science and Technology, and School of Educational Innovation and Teacher Preparation.
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