Engineering students at the California Lutheran University (CLU) recently unveiled a solar-powered drinking fountain that they built themselves. The fountain, which resembles a waterwheel, was dedicated on December 15th at the Thousand Oaks campus, south of Memorial Parkway between the Ahmanson Science Center and E building. The fountain was devised to use California’s sunny climate to quench the thirst of thirsty students.
The landscape fountain, which is one of several environmentally-friendly projects undertaken by CLU students, was designed and built by students from Robert Rumer’s introduction to engineering class. A 245-watt solar module was donated by Camarillo-based SolarWorld USA to help build the project. Other materials used include lights, 5-6 sewer pipes for the fountain, and PVC pipes to hold the solar panel. About six designs were created before the university settled on one, and many ideas had to be scaled back as the team had a budget of $2,000.
As previously stated, this is not the first sustainable project that CLU students have undertaken. In November, faculty, staff and students planted a community garden, while in October the Swenson Center for the Social and Behavioral Sciences met sustainability criteria in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design ( LEED) building program.
Other green projects include student campaigns that encourage classmates to reduce their carbon footprint, student research into sustainable solutions to environmental challenges, and the elimination of food trays and the introduction of biodegradable packaging and organically-grown food on campus. In 2009, CLU was named a climate action leader for participating in a voluntary greenhouse gas reporting program. The main objective of CLU is to offer the same conditions, advantages and opportunities for everyone, no matter their age, their gender, their race, their religion, or their sexual orientation.