The public is invited to attend seven “solarbrations”/ribbon cuttings at schools in Vienna, Herrin and Johnston City on Tuesday, April 18.
The four-module 1.14kW solar awnings installed at each of the featured schools were funded by grants awarded by the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, The Solar Star Foundation and part of a larger USDA Rural Business Development Grant.
The solarbration at Vienna High School will be at 9 a.m. on April 18.
The educational awnings serve to educate students about solar through training provided to their teachers, monitoring of each system that students can view and opportunities to gain an understanding as to how the awnings also help to curb heat gain on the south-facing windows that they shade and shelter.
WindSolarUSA, Inc. developed each of the projects and wrote the larger USDA grant, on behalf of the Illinois Solar Energy Association.
The larger grant provided funding for four of the seven projects and served to train seven electrical contractors in the region on solar installations, supplemented by eight weeks of classroom/on-line instruction, to help them gain their IL DG Certification, which is required to interconnect systems to the electrical grid.
Advanced Energy Solutions of Carterville installed the schools’ systems with the assistance of the electrical contractor students.
For more information contact, VHS superintendent Joshua Stafford at 618-658-4461.