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3D Printing in Solar Energy Research

Students will a have a basic knowledge of how 3D printers work and some of their uses. After seeing the different resources TVA currently uses to power the electrical grid in its service area students will understand how little renewable energy sources are utilized , discuss why this is the case and how 3D printing might be used to make these resources more feasible.

3D Printing Lesson-final

Building Wind Turbine

Students will read a story about wind energy and discuss how we can use wind turbines to capture and turn wind into energy for electricity. The students will discuss using renewable resources versus non-renewable resources to produce electricity. They will observe how the wind turbine will work.

Wind Turbine

Cooking with Solar Oven

Students will have a scenario to build a solar oven to cook a S’more. The teacher and students will discuss renewable versus non-renewable resources and the importance of solar energy. We use solar panels on houses now to help with the electricity to certain houses.

Cooking with a Solar Oven

Wind Turbine Challenge

In this lesson students will work in groups to design the blades for a wind turbine that will generate at least 2 volts of electricity and will light their house.

Lesson 3-wind turbine challenge

Understanding Renewable Resources

Determine the impact of man’s use of renewable and nonrenewable resources on future supplies. Evaluate how human activities affect the condition of the earth’s land, water, and atmosphere. Analyze and evaluate the impact of man’s use of earth’s land, water, and atmospheric resources. Identify a variety of ways in which they use energy at home, distinguish between renewable and nonrenewable resources, and identify sources and distribute methods of the energy that powers the community.

lesson plan 1- Hardison

lesson plan 2- Hardison

lesson plan 3- Hardison

lesson plan 5 and 6- Hardison


Wind Power Density

First, students will open Excel, import instructor’s output file, create a 2D graph. A student learning activity will be to format axes, legends, titles for this graph. This will not be done as part of lesson setup.

Second, students will write a program that uses one month of wind measurements (downloaded from a provided website), to calculate – Average speed vs. time of day, – Average speed vs. day of month – Wind Power Density for each of the above.

Lastly, students will use the calculated values in the design of a wind farm that is installed at a selected location. Students will choose turbines for the farm, and will add a column to the output file generated by this lab.





Exploring Solar Energy

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Students will be investigating the amount of voltage a single solar panel will produce under a variety of conditions. They will keep accurate data since they will be using this data to complete their assessment task for this lesson.

RET Lesson Plan Grade 7 (2)

Power Grid and Integrating Renewable Resources

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By this lesson students have learned about what the power grid is, renewable and nonrenewable resources used to generate electricity, and how solar panels work.  In this lesson students watch a news clip will read a report regarding the integration of solar power into the electric grid and write an informative essay on why a mix of resources is best for the U.S. Power Grid.

RET Lesson Plan Grade 7 (1)


Solar Simulation

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Students will take the working knowledge from the previous lesson and apply some of the skills by participating in solar simulations. The Energy City simulation will give students the opportunity to work with their own “cities” while adding the types of energy sources (nonrenewable/renewable) to create a sustainable city. The solar power simulator gives students the opportunity to turn off/on a solar panel controlled system, change the amount of sunlight that hits the panels, and control the load. The myDaq/myGrid system simulated the control panel of a power generation unit while have a miniature tangible system to manipulate.

RET Lesson Plan Grade 8 (6)

Solar Panel Project

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Students will be making a multimedia project to take before a mock “board of directors” as if they were pitching a solar power project to GMSD school district. Students will research background information and put together a portfolio (with powerpoint or prezi) with solar panel placement, diagrams, maps, cost analysis, cost­benefit, justification, and other needed information that will then be presented to a panel that will give feedback and recommendations based on their project proposals.

RET Lesson Plan Grade 8 (5)