Kentucky Dedicates First Solar School

An electric utility in Kentucky commissioned the state’s first solar system on a school on Friday.

WURTLAND, Kentucky, US, 2001-05-29 [] An electric utility in Kentucky will commission the state’s first solar system on a school on Friday. American Electric Power installed the 1 kilowatt system on Wurtland Elementary School, which will become the state’s first school in the Department of Energy’s Million Solar Roofs Initiative. Other partners include Greenup County School District, Kentucky Natural Resources & Environmental Protection Cabinet, Kentucky Division of Energy, U.S. Department of Energy and the Foundation for Environmental Education. The Greenup County School District will join ‘Learning from Light,’ an energy and environment education program that is designed to help students learn about the different ways of generating electricity and the impact on the environment. The initiative is a joint effort sponsored by AEP, the Foundation for Environmental Education and other partners. The 20, 50 watt photovoltaic panels will be mounted on a pole and connected to the school. The system, which measures 8.5 by 11 feet, will also be connected to the electric grid. The educational program and the installation of solar panels at schools will help students and community residents to understand the importance of using all types of fuels to produce energy. The program also seeks to enhance math and science comprehension among students. A key component of Learning from Light! is installation of an internet-based energy management system developed by AEP Communications. Datapult will link information about the energy output from the solar panels, as well as the school’s total energy demand, to AEP’s internet site so students can see how much electricity the sun is making and how much the school is using. They also will be able to view and graph real-time energy supply and demand and compare their usage to other schools. The Wurtland solar school project is funded by an Eisenhower Fund grant and donations from AEP.
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