Barriere Secondary School students Connor Farrow and Riley Kempter show off their Million Dollar Idea – an offshore wind turbine that would also collect energy from waves. Their project has been picked to compete at a regional science fair to the held in Kamloops April 7-9. (Submitted photo)

Barriere students explore renewable energy

By Keith McNeill

Two physics students from Barriere Secondary School will be competing in an upcoming regional science fair in Kamloops with a project on renewable energy, according to science teacher Thomas Lowe.

Connor Farrow and Riley Kempter’s display shows how an offshore wind turbine also could be used to generate electricity from wave energy. The pair call it The Million Dollar Idea.

“Offshore wind energy is very big in places such as the U.K.,” said Lowe. “The students asked, ‘Why not combine it with wave energy?’ So far they haven’t been able to find an example of the idea being tried.”

Two other students, Tanner Schilling and Macky Jackson, also qualified for the regional science fair but it is not yet clear if they will attend. Schilling and Jackson’s display features a hydro-powered turbine.

The physics class recently completed a unit on renewable energy, said Lowe. First, the students built an electromagnetic generator. Then they had to figure out a way to make it spin.

Besides exploring various options for renewable energy, the students also looked at recovering gold from old computer chips and rebuilding batteries.

The regional science fair will be held in Kamloops on April 7-9.


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Tanner Schilling and Macky Jackson qualified for the upcoming regional science fair in Kamloops with their display of a hydro-powered turbine. (Submitted photo)

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