Solar-powered modular classrooms


Friday, 02 February, 2018


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Two schools in New South Wales are trialling renewable energy classrooms.

Hivve Technology has been provided $368,115 in funding by ARENA to pilot its modular classrooms in a school environment.

The portable classroom, known as the ‘Hivve’, incorporates solar PV generation, real-time energy metering, CO2 metering, data capture and communications to actively manage energy demands and control indoor environment quality.

A regular classroom can consume on average 3800 kWh a year, but when a Hivve classroom is in use, there is an estimated net energy generation of 7600 kWh a year.

Ready for the start of 2018 school year this week, the two pilot classrooms are being trialled at St Christopher’s Catholic Primary School in Holsworthy in Sydney’s south-western suburbs and at Dapto High School in Dapto where the performance of the Hivve classrooms will be monitored and evaluated over a 12-month period.

A prototype building built by Hivve Technology has successfully demonstrated the functionality in a controlled environment and this will be the first time the Hivve classroom and technology has been trialled in a real school.

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said there was enormous potential for Australia’s public schools to not only educate on renewables, but also reduce their reliance on the grid.

“This is a great way to get the next generation involved in renewables at an early age and educate them as to what the positive benefits will be as Australia continues its shift towards a renewable energy future.

“The success of the Hivve project could lead to a nationwide adoption of the modular classrooms, reducing reliance on the grid and even providing a significant amount of electricity back to the NEM,” Frischknecht said.

Hivve Director David Wrench said the Hivve Technology was conceived and designed to deliver sustainable solutions — both environmental and economic — to help meet Australia’s growing school infrastructure needs.

Image credit: ©iStockphoto.com/fstop123

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