We aim to research and design a rudimentary model for the installation of photovoltaic cells onto Swarthmore’s rooftops, determining the cost efficiency per surface area relative to our current energy consumption. By looking at the energy provided to each individual building, by each individual build ing, we hope to recognize the potential of solar panels as an alternative energy sources. Furthermore, by supplying each individual building with it’s own energy source, there is the potential to undercut some of the large initial costs associated with solar panels.
Fundamental to our project is determining the square footage of Swat’s rooftops. Once this data (hopefully in the form of a blueprint) has been acquired, we will combine a research and design component to the project, perhaps in the form of a SolidWorks model.
- Communicate with Swarthmore Facilities to...
- Determine current energy costs - Determine total surface area of academic and residential buildings
- Equation of conversion of energy/unit SA of PV cells (at optimal output)
- Determine costs of PV cells; research any grants and/or subsidies
- Calculation of total energy costs per unit time in relation to current energy costs; comparison
- Possibly: SolidWorks model of one building that has a solar panel that shifts around an axis as the sun moves through the sky, always maintaining "optimal" sun reception.