US DOE WInd Turbines

Variables Affecting Wind Turbine Power

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
5
Description:

Now that students are familiar with how mechanical electricity generation works, they will build a wind turbine powered by a box fan. Different teams will test different turbine variables to see how the amount of electrical power is affected. After each...

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Learning Goal(s):
• Students will be able to identify and explain at least three variables that affect the efficiency of wind turbines • Students will conduct a scientific investigation to determine which wind turbine configuration will generate the most power
Author:
Craig Marais
Estimated Activity Length:
4 hours

Part 2 - Lesson 2: Wind Energy

Grades:
6-12
Lesson Number:
5
Description:

Students will learn about wind and how wind varies across geographies. Students will use Vernier Wind Turbine kits or homemade wind turbines to experiment with blade angles and wind speed. During experimentation, students will collect data as blade angles...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will conduct an experiment where blade angles are the variable and wind speed is constant.2.Students will conduct an experiment where blade angles are constant and wind speed varies.3.Students will collect and analyze data to provide a conclusion to the questions: What is the optimal blade angle for generating the most energy? What is the optimal wind speed for generating the most energy?4.Students will research prevailing winds and use a provided map of their region to indicate wind speed and direction.5.Students will propose locations for wind farms based on optimal energy generation and zoning restrictions.6.Based on their proposals, students will determine a range of potential kilowatt generation from wind power.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
10 hours

Keeping it Cool With Solar - Structure Test: How Cool Are We?

Grades:
K-2
Lesson Number:
5
Description:

This lesson is designed for one 30-45 minute session. Students are shown how thermo infrared thermometers work. Teacher uses infrared thermometer and has students record the ground temperature outside and inside their structure. Students record and...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students build shade structures that will optimize cooling the earth’s surface from sunlight. Students collect and analyze how cool the earth’s surface is inside their structure.
Author:
Mark Lewin
Relevant NGSS PE:
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
0 sec

Cost Effective Solar Cells: Copper Oxide Solar Cell Construction and Testing

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
5
Description:

This lesson is designed to be completed in one 80-minute section, but can be done in two 40-minute sections. The teacher will facilitate student construction of copper oxide plates with electric burners or hot plates. Teachers will guide students in...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will construct an oxidized copper sheet solar cell Students will test an oxidized copper sheet solar cell for voltage and current
Author:
Tom Wolverton
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours
Sphero SPRK+

Solar SPRK+: Final Challenge and Presentation

Grades:
6-8
Unit:
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

In this lesson, students will navigate through a maze using their SPRK+ in order to reach the solar charging station. Students will redesign their chariot in order to meet the needs of this new maze in order to carry their solar panels to the charging...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will combine SPRK+ programming with the construction of a compatible chariot in order to guide their SPRK+ “Mars rover” to carry solar panels to a charging station.Students will present a final project to the class that summarizes their knowledge about the scientific background knowledge tied to this project as well as their design and testing process.
Author:
Deb Frankel
Estimated Activity Length:
8 hours
Solar Circuit

Variables Affecting Solar Power

Grades:
7-8
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

Students will plan and condict an investigation into solar photovoltaic technologies to determine what variables affect the output of panels. They will calculate and compare their exploration of solar panels to their previous investigation of wind turbines...

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Learning Goal(s):
• Students will be able to identify and explain at least three variables that effect the efficiency of photovoltaic cells • Students will conduct a scientific investigation to determine which photovoltaic cell configuration will generate the most power.
Author:
Craig Marais
Estimated Activity Length:
2 hours

Part 2 - Lesson 3: Solar Energy

Grades:
6-12
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

Students will work with local government staff or another local energy professional to propose a way to create enough solar power energy to supply the annual energy needs for a real building. Students will be provided with on-site options, and will...

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Learning Goal(s):
1.Students will conduct an experiment to determine how electrical output changes as solar panels as the azimuth and tilts are incrementally changed.2.Students will conduct an experiment to determine how electrical output changes as solar panels are shaded.3.Students will work with the staff from your city or town to calculate the amount of potential electrical energy that can be collected from solar panels based upon the location and size of the system.4.Students will use existing solar data to determine the number of solar panels required to power the building in question.
Author:
Jonathan Strunin
Estimated Activity Length:
6 hours

Keeping it Cool With Solar: Add Solar Panel Redesign, Rebuild, Retest

Grades:
K-2
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

This lesson is designed for one 60-minute session. Students will share and discuss results. Students are shown solar panel and fan and are asked, “Using solar technology, how might we make the ground in our structures even cooler?” Using the solar panel...

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Cost Effective Solar Cells: Copper Oxide Cell Data Sharing

Grades:
9-12
Lesson Number:
6
Description:

This lesson is designed to be completed in one 40-minute section. The teacher will facilitate the sharing of student solar cell data from indoor and outdoor testing through a gallery walk session. Variables such as lighting, photovoltaic effect, copper...

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Learning Goal(s):
Students will share and analyze oxidized copper sheet solar cell data
Author:
Tom Wolverton
Other Subjects Covered:
Estimated Activity Length:
1 hour
Solar Car Student

Solar Car Challenge: Solutions Briefing

Grades:
6-8
Lesson Number:
7
Description:

Students will play around with the solar car kits to familiarize themselves with the materials in preparation for the solar car engineering challenge.

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Learning Goal(s):
To introduce students to the problem that this project will attempt to solve: building a solar car that will go straight, far, and fast to win a race.
NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:
Author:
Karen Nelson
Estimated Activity Length:
50 min