How Can I Make a Solar Project for School?


Quick Answer

One idea for a solar project for school is a solar-powered radio, which requires wiring a solar panel to a battery-operated radio. Making a solar-powered radio takes roughly two hours and requires a solar panel, a battery-operated radio, a multimeter and basic wiring tools such as electrical tape, screwdrivers, a soldering iron and pliers. Specific material requirements are a BAT43 blocking diode and double-sided adhesive tape.

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Full Answer

  1. Prepare the solar panel

    One option for obtaining a solar panel is by removing it from a solar-powered light. To do this, remove the metal rim and clear lens from the light. Use a screwdriver to leverage the solar panel off. Choose a light that features eight full-length strips.

  2. Prepare the radio

    Use the appropriate screwdriver to remove the back panel of the radio; most require a Phillips head screwedriver. Use a drill to make a hole in the back panel just large enough for wires to fit through.

  3. Identify the wires

    The batteries should still be inside the radio. Locate where the batteries are connected. Use the multimeter to identify which wire is positive and which is negative.

  4. Solder the diode to the solar panel

    Identify the positive terminal on the back of the solar panel. Use the soldering iron to attach the BAT43 blocking diode to that terminal. Set the multimeter to volts, and ensure there is an output of bright light from the panel. Wrap electrical tape around the bare wires.

  5. Wire the panel to the radio

    Remove the batteries from the radio. Attach the solar panel to the top of the radio using the double-sided tape. Thread the wires through the hole in the back panel. Use the soldering iron to attach the radio's negative and positive wires to the solar panel. Use electrical tape to cover any bare wires.

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