Energy choices

Published 1:53 am Saturday, December 10, 2011

A “welcoming” ceremony was held Friday morning for the North Carolina Estuarium’s newest exhibit — the Sprout Renewable Energy Kiosk.
Welcome, indeed. The kiosk should prove a valuable addition to the Estuarium’s other exhibits that help tell the story of the Albemarle-Pamlico Estuary, the second-largest estuary in the USA behind the Chesapeake Bay. The kiosk will be used to educate students about wind power and solar power. It includes solar panels, a wind turbine and weather station. It is designed to withstand winds up to 130 mph.
“The data generated from all three components serves (as) an exhibit to educate students and the general public,” reads a document describing the kiosk and its purpose. “The integrated information appears on an intuitive dashboard to help connect weather to the renewable energy it can produce. The stand-alone kiosk is powered by its energy systems to go anywhere with minimal infrastructure coordination. The Sprout kiosk connects technology and information seamlessly transforming the process for learning about clean energy. The full size components are easy to see and Sprout displays real time data on its screen and through a web-interface to any location.”
The kiosk should help “demystify” the concept of renewable energy and have that concept become more familiar in our daily lives. And if talk about renewable energy turns into talk about energy conservation and efficiency, as Sprout Energy Corp. believes will happen, so much the better.
“Those conversations are the ones that we hope will impact new energy choices,” notes the Sprout website.
Let’s hope many such conversations take place in the future because of such kiosks.