(May 13, 2010)--The University of Texas at San Antonio, led by technical experts from the College of Engineering's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and supported by engineers and project managers from the UTSA Office of Facilities, will receive $1.08 million in Department of Energy stimulus funds distributed by the State Energy Conservation Office (SECO) to install solar panels on two buildings at the UTSA Main Campus.
Led by engineering professors Brian Kelley, Mo Jamshidi and Hariharan Krishnaswami with assistance from undergraduate student Gerardo Trevino, the project will produce a wireless smart grid to monitor the energy and cost savings from utilizing the solar panels.
The solar-energy grant is one of four that will enable solar panel installations in San Antonio. The City of San Antonio, St. Philip's College and the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio also received funding for solar initiatives.
"This is a big step forward for sustainability in San Antonio," said Mayor Julian Castro. "With these grants, we will multiply our solar energy production by several times as well as make real the value of renewable sources of energy to the community."
Mauli Agrawal, dean of the UTSA College of Engineering, said the grant already is building momentum for energy research at UTSA. "UTSA is committed to achieving national research status," he said. "Through energy and sustainability research, the College of Engineering is steadfast in supporting that goal."
UTSA will install the solar panels on the roofs of the University Center's recent expansion and the Support Services Building on the Main Campus. The panels are expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions up to 273,661 pounds annually, the equivalent of planting 37.2 acres of trees. They also are expected to generate 237 megawatt hours of energy, saving UTSA as much as $64,000 per year.
"The introduction of this green technology fits into UTSA's long-term energy plan by reducing annual utility costs and providing a renewable source of electricity to power UTSA facilities," said Dave Riker, UTSA associate vice president for facilities. "This will result in saving scarce operating funds for other important purposes."
CPS Energy also will participate in the UTSA solar initiative. To create opportunities for UTSA students to work on the project, $127,720 is pledged from its solar rebate program for student scholarships.
"It may be one of these very students who someday develops more efficient solar power generation technologies or solves the all-important issue of power storage, making renewable energy sources like solar PV as effective as conventional power plants in supplying our energy needs," said Bruce Evans, CPS Energy director of custom solutions delivery.
The UTSA solar energy systems are planned to be in operation by the end of next year.
Ron Ellis conducts the student instrumental ensemble in a free concert that is open to the public.
Arts Building, Recital Hall (Arts 2.03.02), Main Campus
The UTSA Office of Veteran and Military Affairs is hosting a day full of outreach events and activities by the U.S. Navy as part of a larger Navy presence in San Antonio called Navy Week with various events in the community through Feb. 25.
Student Union Paseo and Convocation Center entrance, Main Campus
Join this interactive play that is a courtroom drama and the audience is the jury. Discussion and will follow.
Student Union, Retama Auditorium (SU 2.02.02), Main Campus
Langston Clark, UTSA assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology, Health, and Nutrition will discuss exploring the historical context for the role of black athletes in contemporary social movements.
John Peace Library, Assembly Room (JPL 4.04.22), Main Campus
The UTSA African American Studies program invites speakers from the leading African American Fraternities and Sororities for a panel discussion of the history of each organization and to enlighten the audience about the community service, academic purpose, professionalism and ethical roots of each group.
Student Union, Mesquite Room (SU 2.01.24), Main Campus
MuTe Fest is a celebration of original music and technology. Three days of concerts, sessions, and informative lectures will offer a unique experience of musical works created by fellow UTSA students and the chance to gain valuable knowledge about music technology.
Art Building, Music Tech Lab (Arts 3.01.30B), Main Campus
UTSA Libraries hosts Assistant Professor Ian Caine for his lecture, Architectural Postcards from Space, as part of the popular Pizza + Research series. Pizza will be served while supplies last.
Buena Vista Street Building (BVB 2.304), Downtown Campus
The theme of this year’s symposium is Black & Brown Futures. The free event will give UTSA students and the community the opportunity to meet and hear national scholars talk about current research and academic trends relevant to the lives of African Americans in the United States.
Student Union, Denman Room (SU 2.01.28), Main Campus
The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.
To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.
We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.