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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

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Sign-up under way for Energy and Science Camp

Wednesday, June 4, 2014


Rising sixth and seventh-graders are encouraged to sign up for summer CEED Energy and Science Camp.

Campers will meet at the CEED (Center for Energy Efficient Design) building Monday, July 14 through Thursday, July 17 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily.

During the week, students will explore alternative energies, as well as investigate different methods of water purification, especially solar water purification.

"Water samples collected around The Gereau Center will be viewed under a digital microscope to identify any bacteria that it may have," said camp coordinator Neil Sigmon, who is an instructor at the CEED. "The campers will then investigate the likely consequences if consumed by a human."

Solar oven cooking will be demonstrated on two separate occasions, and there will be healthy snacks and participation certificates for all, Sigmon said. 

Many of the camp activities will be conducted outdoors, so campers should dress according to the weather.

On Monday, campers will be given a tour of the CEED and will be introduced to the Data Dashboard, the comprehensive monitoring system that is unique to the CEED.

"A discussion will be initiated regarding our drinking water supply and the risk and dangers of contamination," said Sigmon. "Campers will be presented with the scenario of being without a credible source of water and the challenges of water purification."

On Tuesday, participants will collect water samples from designated areas on the Gereau Center campus. The samples will be labeled and a digital microscope will be used to view slides of the samples to check for bacteria. Campers will then be challenged to identify the bacteria and to research the risks associated with ingesting them.

Various samples will be subjected to purification methods, including Chlorine, purification tablets and pasteurization using a solar oven. The samples will be viewed once again after subjecting them to purification efforts.

Wednesday's activities will involve preparing food for cooking in pre-made solar ovens and placing them in the sun.

Campers will then compete against each other in the Wind Turbine Blade Design Challenge. The campers, divided into teams of two, will design turbine blades for a miniature working model of a wind turbine. The turbines will be placed in front of a fan, and the resulting power output will be determined using a multi-meter.

The campers will retrieve their snacks from the solar ovens.

On Thursday, students will experiment with solar energy, powering everything from model cars to small water pumps to larger pond pumps.

Applications for camp are being accepted now and are limited to the first 20 campers.

Applications may be obtained by contacting Sigmon at

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