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Photovoltaic Panel Constructed at RFHS
Photovoltaic Panel at River Falls High SchoolOne of the key objectives of POWERful Choices! is to work closely with the public schools. This includes helping them conserve energy to manage costs, as well as providing educational opportunities for district staff and students.

Photovoltaic Demonstration System

As possible projects and initiatives were identified, 2 concepts meshed into one vision. The idea of a photovoltaic demonstration system to help kick off the POWERful Choices! campaign, and provide a resource for students to utilize as a part of their learning experience, resulted in the following proposal: site a solar electric resource at River Falls High School.

Memorandum of Understanding
In December 2007, the River Falls School District (RFSD) and River Falls Municipal Utilities (RFMU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to identify the framework of cooperation in the deployment of a 3.7 kW photovoltaic dual-axis tracker system estimated to produce 5,236 kWh per year. The total project cost, including labor, material, and an educational kiosk display system inside the school is estimated at $45,000.

An estimated $11,000 will be funded in the form of a grant utilized by RFMU’s POWERful Choices! and Commitment to Community (formerly known as Public Benefits) funding with the remaining funding to be generously provided by Wisconsin Public Power Inc. (WPPI) through a Renewable Project Grant and Power Supply Resource Funding.

System Utilization
This system is located between the main entrance into the high school and Cemetery Road, on RFSD property, in an effort to provide maximum community visibility. This system will be utilized as a learning tool incorporated into curriculum in numerous subjects and serve as a display for the responsible use of natural resources, promoting a technology that will help reduce our dependence of fossil fuels and combat global climate change.

The system will provide opportunities to be incorporated into community, service learning and student projects, while demonstrating technologies that will provide opportunities in the future job market.

For more information, view real time output data of the PV panel at River Falls High School.