AzRISE Invites Campus to Solar Energy Event

AzRISE Invites Campus to Solar Energy Event

By University Communications
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University of Arizona employees are invited to a continental breakfast and poster presentation Friday morning to celebrate the inaugural year of research and outreach at the UA's solar energy institute. The event runs from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. in the South Ballroom of the Student Union Memorial Center.

"We want everyone on campus to know the extent of the UA's efforts in supporting solar energy research this year and hope to encourage other faculty to become involved," said Joe Simmons, director of the Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy, known as AzRISE. The institute encourages and funds interdisciplinary research among scientists and engineers who might not normally work together, he said.

Researchers will be on hand to explain the institute's work in areas such as photovoltaic materials, energy storage systems and solar concentrators. They'll also explain their efforts to level the cost of solar energy, improve energy security and promote environmentally sound land use when developing solar power plants.

Students and faculty also will talk about AzRISE demonstration projects, which include a solar-powered automobile and a fully solar-powered home.

The car is being built for the Shell Eco-Marathon, a competition to design and build fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly automobiles. The solar house is the UA's first entry in the National Solar Decathlon, which will be held in the fall of 2009 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The UA's team is one of only 20 university-led teams selected to compete in that event.

Faculty from several UA colleges are working with AzRISE, including Science, Engineering, Management, Optical Sciences, Agriculture and Life Sciences, and Architecture and Landscape Architecture.

AzRISE researchers are developing and promoting solar energy solutions through:

  • Research and development, including solar-powered desalination.
  • Economics and public policy efforts.
  • Education and outreach.
  • Demonstration projects.

These efforts are aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, achieving energy independence and boosting the state's economy. The institute also is working to quickly bring research patented at the UA to the marketplace.

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