by Shawna Goemaat
Plans have been made to add a bit of art along with alternative energy to the south side of the Musco Technology Center. Photovoltaic solar panels will be installed that will convert sunlight into electricity.
Students in the Advanced Solid Modeling class are working to make the energy source unique. They are designing a frame for the panels that will not only make the panels useful, but also a work of art.
“We’re designing the panels to look like a quilt square,” Dr. Jim Hoeksema, Professor of Industrial Technology, said.
A wooden frame was set up where solar panels will be installed later next spring to aesthetically get an idea of what the real solar panels will look like.
The purpose of the solar panels is mostly educational; they will produce very little electricity.
“This will only be a drop in the bucket,” Hoeksema said. “It’s not a lot, but it is a statement that we’re doing something.”
Funding for the panels came from the department’s budget.
Five students in the Advance Solid Modeling class have been working on the project designing the framework for the panels.
“It’s a great experience to learn more about alternative energy,” Nathan Merical, student in the class, said.
Oskaloosa’s Musco Lighting will manufacture the pieces. Next semester’s Alternative Energy class will be doing the assembly of the solar panels.
(Read more about this story in the December 2012 issue of The Chronicle, William Penn University’s student newspaper–copies will be available on campus and in the Oskaloosa community on December 6.)