The Center for Renewable Energy has a long history of efforts to expand access to reliable and renewable power in developing nations. In combination with the UMass Lowell Energy Engineering Program, our faculty have developed partnerships with organizations in Haiti and Peru. Efforts within the center are aimed toward expanding the global use of renewable energy, developing technologies that can impact the 1.1 billion people in the world who do not have access to electricity. Our faculty apply engineering and decision-making models to find solutions encompassing climate change & environmental problems, energy & process modeling, multi-objective optimization, sustainability, system modeling & optimization for energy resilience, life cycle assessment (LCA), techno-economic analysis (TEA), climate smart housing, and food insecurity in the cold supply chain.
- Thanks to student projects in the College of Engineering, residents of Tohono O’odham Nation in Arizona now have access to running water and solar-generated electricity.
- Since 1997, UMass Lowell has been participating in a Village Empowerment project with the communities surrounding the city of Huarmey, in the Andes Mountains of Peru. The project has included the installation of solar PV power stations in several mountain communities. The electricity has been used to power vaccine refrigerators, lights in the medical posts, and radios for communication.
The Haiti Development Studies Center engages science and engineering faculty and students in philanthropic research focused on solving life-threatening issues faced by citizens in impoverished countries, including the impacts of contaminants and lack of access to electricity on sanitation, food supply, and inequitable health outcomes. With projects involving energy, water and food safety as a priority, faculty and students will focus on examining health concerns, developing programs to decrease the impact of environmental contaminants, and assessing the efficacy of those programs.