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U of L engineers study solar light power

On a busy street in downtown Louisville, University of Louisville graduate student Eric Biebighauser gets a bird's eye view of traffic. But he's not studying cars. He's gathering information from solar powered street lights.

Dr. Keith Sharp

"We're looking at how reliable they are, how much light they provide and the quality of light on the street."

Keith Sharp is in U of L's Speed School of Engineering.

Sharp continues

"There are three different systems with data loggers. They'll be compared and then the city decides which is best and where the can work."

This is only one project in the Partnership for a Green City, a team effort of U of L, the city and other organizations to conserve energy while saving money. In this case, Sharp and his students are looking at which solar powered photo voltaic lights would be most efficient in certain areas.

Sharp adds

"The hope is to be able to put street lights in places that are appropriate like those locations that are difficult to get wires in to run power."

Sharp says the project is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. And it gives his students the opportunity to work in the field.

Sharp concludes

"Many projects are in the lab. Here, the lab is in the environment and students get to see the end application. It's very real."

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