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Our Town Microgrid Challenge

Students will develop plans for an energy microgrid for their town, weighing costs, environmental concerns, location, and emergency needs. Students will present their work to their peers, and to town leaders/planners and discuss real-world concerns and actions. This unique unit allow students to create engineering solutions for their own town.
Using this lesson in your classroom

What are microgrids and why would you want one? This unit leads students to understand and apply the answers to that question. The unit includes a multiple step process, with industry and policy readings, investigation of town maps and properties, consideration of emergency needs in the event that electric power is lost, and design of a system that will meet that need. Throughout the unit students hold a "public hearing" with their peers to discuss and fine-tune their ideas, and a capstone presentation to town leaders to discuss their solutions in a real-world context.

The unit is supported with readings and background information, suggested "building" and energy "generator" cards, and a suggested process to lead students to an understanding of the unit question.

Grade Level:
High School
  • NGSS: HS-ESS3-2, ESS3-4, ETS1-1, ETS1-2, ETS1-3
Teacher Materials
Our Town Microgrid Challenge lesson (568.8 KB)
Microgrid Guide for Mayors article (13.4 KB)
Other Materials
Cummins-Economic Risk info (157.0 KB)
Cummins-Smart Grid info (1,963.7 KB)
Cummins-Standby Power info (154.4 KB)
Cummins- Equipment background info (729.2 KB)