Desert Vista High School is one of 14 Arizona schools that will receive a comprehensive solar panel system in a partnership with the Salt River Project.

By the end of 2010, a 10 kW photovoltaic solar panel system will be installed on the roof of the Ahwatukee Foothills school. SRP is giving DV all the necessary hookups into the electrical grid, a weather station for the roof and an information center in the front office where students, faculty and community members can see how much energy is being produced and how much it is saving the community.

The faculty already has plans to involve not just science classes, but business, math, and social studies.

Dan Zavaleta, head of the technology department at DV, said his students will focus on several different aspects when the new solar panel system is put in place.

"We will be putting together the data and drawing conclusions about what a bigger system would do, and finding out how much a bigger system would cost and how long it would take to pay it off," Zavaleta said. "It's a great tool to show students how solar energy works, how it benefits the community and we will also look at careers associated with it."

The solar panel system is DV's to keep and will surely benefit future classes, Zavaleta said.



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