Check out this awesome project by students at Alan B Shepard High School!
We’ll be documenting this great project on our blog!
Here’s what they’ve submitted so far about the project:
This project is designed to offer students the opportunity to take part in a STEM project. We are building a solar-powered biodiesel system to provide eco-friendly and low cost diesel fuel to the city of Crestwood Public Works.
This system will be operated using only solar power to make this project totally “green”. The main goal is to lower greenhouse gases by making biodiesel without using electricity created from fossil fuels. Standard gasoline is extremely harmful to the environment because it releases a myriad of carbon particulates. Making biodiesel can be a simple and innovative process that drastically reduces emissions. In essence, we created a biodiesel system that has a zero carbon footprint and thus, contributes to the betterment of our “green” initiative.”
Building a solar powered biodiesel processor would provide students with an exciting hands-on activity and research project. We can potentially expand to create multiple biodiesel systems at various schools with the area as well as the district. By reaching out to various communities, we can efficiently spread the word about our project and hopefully sparked other innovative ideas. A number of other communities have also expressed great interest in having our team help them start their own Biodiesel programs, so there is plenty of room for state-wide and even nation-wide expansion.
Key benefits from the project
- Building a solar powered biodiesel processor would provide students with an exciting hands-on activity and research project.
- This project would be entirely a STEM project challenging students to use physics, chemistry, business, environmental science, engineering, CTE, and math skills learned in the classroom.
- The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) require students to demonstrate and make presentations about skills learned in the classroom.
- This project would allow students to use and demonstrate skills like speech, writing, project presentation, computer graphics, graphing, mechanical engineering, numerical analysis, titration, pH, solutions, mixtures, electronics, circuits, energy conversion, power conversion, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, engine performance, and engine emission analysis, to name a few.
- It costs $1.50 (or less) per gallon to make biodiesel.
- Solar Panels provided by Navistar allow use to produce biodiesel with a zero carbon footprint.
We have already successfully made biodiesel and through various testing they have observed that the biodiesel is close to pure and that the project has little to no flaws in it’s process.
Crestwood’s partnership with a local high school has increased their public image in a variety of ways. Their contributions to our project have been widely recognized in the media. Their fuel cost will be reduced by running their vehicles on our fuel. In the past, Crestwood has received negative publicity, but the emergence of our biodiesel project has improved their reputation immensely.”
Check out some of the additional benefits this project will offer as well:
- Fuel Costs will be lower for the city of Crestwood, which will save money that can potentially improve other public resources of the town.
- Crestwood has directly showed their dedication to addressing this issue by allowing us to use their facilities
- Crestwood has made a strong effort to provide resources in order to successfully build our biodiesel project.
- With the project running strong, the public reception towards Crestwood has increased.
- The project has exemplified Crestwood’s dedication to providing a more eco-friendly environment to improve the general health of the town.
- By providing our project with different resources, Crestwood’s public image been boosted.
- Crestwood has shown that they are willing to open up their facilities to help contribute to our education as high school students.
- Besides Crestwood, the i-Biodiesel team is looking towards NOT only giving free eco-friendly fuel to other schools, towns, municipalities, and forest preserve districts, but to help them build and operate their own biodiesel system.
News & Media Coverage:
ABC 7 Eyewitness News – Oct 26, 2013
South Town Star News Article – Nov. 6th, 2013
CBS 2 News Chicago Jan. 9, 2014 – Part 1
CBS 2 News Chicago – Jan. 9, 2014 – Part 2
CBS 2 News Chicago – Jan. 9, 2014 – Part 3
CBS 2 News Chicago- Jan. 9, 2014 – Part 4