Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Students full of renewable energy
16 May 2012

SCHOOL students are learning about renewable energy through Australia's first mini wind turbine trial at West Beach. The State Government, with the West Beach Trust, is testing four different turbines for 12 months. The power output is compared to a 6kW solar system nearby, with all the data displayed online. Yesterday the Royal Institution of Australia launched a Wind Technology Education Package, with funding from the West Beach branch of Bendigo Bank, to help students in Years 7 10 get in on the act.

The package covers practical applications, optimal locations and uses of wind turbines. Students from West Beach Primary School and Henley High School were the first to use the package, conducting hands-on activities at the site of the mini wind turbine trial. Students built and tested a model wind turbine and learned what designs worked best. RiAus program co-ordinator Dr Tania Meyer said it enabled students to explore the concepts through a "real world example". Jayden from Henley High School is studying renewable energy in his Year 11 Advanced Technologies class. "I think it's interesting making something out of nothing", he said. "We need something like wind power for when the petrol runs out".