The Institute - March 2020 - TI-14

economically because they now can use
power tools, for example.
"In terms of social impacts, the solar
energy system can help the residents of
Hanchipacha hold town hall meetings after
dark," Wong says. "This is quite important for the villagers because they are
an agricultural community and daylight
hours are very valuable."

The system has enabled children to he says, they are able to keep up with
study in the community center at night, their schoolwork.
IEEE SIGHT is planning another solar
he says. Children are expected to do
chores to help their farming families, he project in Peru in May-which Wong
points out, so "they have limited hours is leading.
to study, and when they do have time, -J.G.
it's at night." In the past, he says, stuThis article originally appeared online as
dents used candles to light the room "University of Calgary Students Bring Solar
and had a difficult time reading. Now, Energy to Peruvian Village."

IEEE Member Thiago Matheus Martins de Moraes
gives an overview to preuniversity students
about the FEG-Sustentável project.

EE undergrads. An additional 10 undergrads and 80 volunteers, including faculty
members, lend a hand when they can.



EEE Member Thiago Matheus Martins de Moraes has been helping the
campus of São Paulo State University
in Brazil become more energy efficient,
cleaner, and less wasteful. His helpers
are classmates and faculty members from
the university's School of Engineering of
Guaratinguetá (FEG).
Through the FEG-Sustentável project,
the team has installed a photovoltaic
solar energy generation system, made


outdoor lighting more efficient, built a
recycling center, and designed a prototype
rainwater-harvesting machine. (Sustentável
means sustainable in Portugese.)
Martins de Moraes, who is pursuing
a master's degree in management and
sustainability at the university, founded
FEG-Sustentável in 2019 and is its director. The core team includes a doctoral
student studying medical science, an electrical engineering grad student, and two



One of the project's first steps was to
install 18 photovoltaic panels on the campus to generate solar energy. The university used to get all its electricity from the
national power grid. In Brazil, with each
kilowatt hour consumed from the grid,
more than 83 grams of carbon dioxide
are emitted into the atmosphere.
"The university used to spend about
[US] $20,000 a month on electricity,"
Martins de Moraes says. "But with solar
energy panels and our energy-efficiency
plan, we estimated that we could reduce
that amount by 30 percent."
The solar energy is fed to the campus's
electricity grid through an on-grid sine
wave inverter, which converts DC to AC.
The team plans to install eight more solar
panels. With 26 photovoltaic panels, the
system could generate 1.45 megawatt hours
per month, Martins de Moraes estimates.
The solar energy center has been operating for 1,000 hours and has been able to
generate 1 MWh of electricity. That's not
enough to power the entire campus, but it
reduces conventional energy consumption.

The Institute - March 2020

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