The high school component of SEED’s outreach is a continued collaboration with Berkeley High School (BHS). UC Berkeley graduate students mentor small groups of 11th and 12th grade BHS students enrolled in Mr. Stephen Salser’s Integrated Science course for 1 hour during class. The mentors lead hands-on lessons focused on the physics of energy conversion. During the fall semester, the lessons are:
- Intro: What is Energy? Experiment building a Battery – Motor – LED circuit
- Efficiency and Solar Power : Measuring solar cell device power output and annotating a plan set for a home PV installation.
- Wind Energy : Measuring electricity generated by a homemade wind turbine, and measuring wind speed from fans and the environment.
- Thermoelectric Modules : Measuring efficiency of heating/cooling with electrical input, and generating electricity from heat. Discussion of lifetime cost.
- Hydroelectric and Semester Wrap-Up : Measuring efficiency of water wheel turbine, and overview of energy flow in US.
During the spring semester, students optimize the efficiency of conversion devices ranging from water bottle rockets to rubber-band powered cars and hot air balloons. Students present their projects at the end-of-year SEED Energy Fair!