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Solar Energy Technology Associate Degree

Program Code: 104824

The Solar Energy Technology program provides installers, designers, and technical sales personnel the skills to assess sites; design systems; an install, operate, and maintain solar electric and solar thermal systems for residential and commercial applications in the growing renewable energy industry. Potential employment possibilities will be with existing solar, electrical and mechanical contractors to help expand their offerings of solar energy technologies. Other possible areas of employment are with energy consulting firms, design firms and utilities. With additional education and experience, graduates can expand their careers to energy analyst, journeyperson electrician/plumber, project manager, energy engineer, and environmental consultant.

Follow Your Path

All credits from the following certificate(s) apply toward this associate degree:
• Renewable Energy-Solar Electric, 904821
• Renewable Energy-Solar Thermal, 904822

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Employment Potential

A graduate of the program will have the potential for employment for diverse employers, such as renewable energy businesses, energy companies, equipment supply companies, oil and gas field service companies and utilities in the following areas:

• Solar Electric Energy Technician: designs, estimates, installs, troubleshoots, repairs and modifies residential and/or commercial solar electric systems.

• Solar Site Assessor: conducts facility energy audit/assessments; is responsible for making recommendations regarding solar energy systems. Prepares cost estimates, energy analysis; is accountable for building long-term customer relationships.

• Solar Sales Representative: provides consultations and assessments to potential customers. Manages the pipeline of contacts and opportunities within an assigned territory and deliver compelling presentations. Acts as the project manager for installation of systems and coordination of closeout.

With additional education and/or work experience, graduates may find other opportunities for employment.

• Energy Analyst
• Plumber or Electrician Journeyperson
• Project Manager
• Energy Engineer
• Environmental Consultant

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Requirements for Program Entry

• Completed application.
• High school transcript or equivalent. (For a list of equivalents, go to www.nwtc.edu/gettingstarted).
• To be admitted to this program, learners must achieve a prior cumulative high school or college grade point average of 2.6 or higher OR a satisfactory academic skills assessment score. College grade point average must be based on 15 credits or more. To learn more about starting this program, please contact an academic advisor at (920) 498-5444 or (888) 385-6982.

Program Availability

FULL TIME Fall 2018 Spring 2019 Summer 2019
Green Bay
Accepting
Unavailable
Unavailable
Marinette
Unavailable
Unavailable
Unavailable
Sturgeon Bay
Unavailable
Unavailable
Unavailable

Application Checklist

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Curriculum
Students following the study plan below will complete the Solar Energy Technology associate degree in the number of semesters shown.
FIRST SEMESTER
10-890-101 COLLEGE 101 ...Students will utilize digital tools and resources to assess, explore, practice, apply, and evaluate both employability and learning skills. By establishing NWTC cultural values as hallmarks of success in academic, career, and personal settings the course encourages reflective, personalized development of a growth mindset and emphasizes the importance of making wise choices. To maximize the return on investment, students should take this course in their first semester as it identifies key expectations (hidden rules) of higher learning and professional employment.
10-442-150 MACHINE FABRICATION 1 ...a study of joining processes including welding, brazing, soldering, mechanical fasteners and adhesives.
10-480-101 ENERGY-INTRO RENEW & SUSTAIN ...an overview of various renewable energy technologies and sustainable design practices and their current applications. Emphasis will be placed on policies, renewable energy production, green products and jobs.
10-620-100 FLUIDS 1: BASIC PNEUMATICS ...what fluid power is, differentiate between hydraulics and pneumatics, implement basic pneumatic circuits, utilize schematics, apply Pascal's Law, define properties of fluids, implement airflow control and hydraulics cylinder circuits.
10-620-101 FLUIDS 2: BASIC HYDRAULICS ...hydraulic pumps, basic hydraulics actuator circuits, hydraulic schematics, apply Pascal's Law, summarize the effects of fluids friction, define properties of hydraulic energy, design hydraulic circuits with directional control valves. (Corequisite: 10-620-100, Fluids 1: Basic Pneumatics)
10-660-104 DC 1: INTRODUCTION ...introduction to the concepts of DC electricity and simple series circuits. Voltage, current, resistance, Ohm's Law, power and Kirchoff's Voltage Law are defined.
10-660-105 DC 2: CIRCUITS ...analysis of parallel and series-parallel circuits. Application of Kirchoff's Current Law to parallel circuit combinations. Introduction of current sources and source conversions. (Corequisites: 10-804-118, Interim Algebra w Apps OR 10-804-113, College Tech Math 1A; 10-660-104, DC 1: Intro)
10-804-113 COLLEGE TECHNICAL MATH 1A ...topics include solving linear equations; graphing; percent; proportions; measurement systems; computational geometry; and right triangle trigonometry. Emphasis will be on the application of skills to technical problems. (Prerequisite: A placement value of 2400; OR Accuplacer Arithmetic score greater/equal to 65 AND Reading score greater/equal to 55; OR ACT Math score greater/equal to 15 AND ACT Reading score greater/equal to 16; OR preparatory courses-contact an academic advisor 920-498-5444)
10-482-126 INTRODUCTION TO SOLAR ...an overview of the use of sunlight to produce heat and electricity and the practical and economical use of solar power and solar thermal systems. Learn the importance of energy efficiency and the economics of solar hybrid designs.
SEMESTER TOTAL
17
SECOND SEMESTER
10-482-132 PHOTOVOLTAICS-DESIGN & SITE ...learn steps to performing a site audit prior to installation of a PV system. Focus on defining the solar window, system site placement, system sizing and design, load analysis and energy efficiency concepts. (Prerequisite: 10-482-126, Intro to Solar)
10-620-140 MACHINE WIRING AND SAFETY ...introduction to machine wiring, including basic documentation, labeling, and wiring practices; an overview of NFPA 70 machinery, safety and installation standards.
10-660-107 AC 1: PROPERTIES ...introduction to the properties of capacitors and inductors including types and behavior in switching circuits. Inductor basics include a study of magnetic fields. (Prerequisite: 10-660-105, DC 2: Circuits; Corequisite: 10-804-196, Trigonometry w Apps OR 10-804-114, College Tech Math 1B)
10-660-108 AC 2: REACTANCE ...study of the way inductive, capacitive and resistive components behave in a circuit excited by a sine waveform. Effective and average values of the sinewave are derived. (Corequisite: 10-660-107, AC 1: Properties)
10-660-110 ELECTRONICS 1: DIODES-BASIC ...introduction to the characteristics and usage of semiconductor diodes in rectifiers and linear power supplies. Special diodes and diode circuits are also considered. (Prerequisite: 10-660-105, DC 2: Circuits; Corequisite: 10-660-107, AC 1: Properties)
10-804-114 COLLEGE TECHNICAL MATH 1B ...topics include: performing operations on polynomials; solving quadratic and rational equations; formula rearrangement; solving systems of equations; and oblique triangle trigonometry. Emphasis will be on the application of skills to technical problems. (Prerequisite: 10-804-113, Tech Math 1A with grade C or better)
10-806-143 COLLEGE PHYSICS 1 ...presents the applications and theory of basic physics principles. This course emphasizes problem solving, laboratory investigation and applications. Topics include laboratory safety, unit conversions and analysis, kinematics, dynamics, work, energy, power, temperature, and heat. (Prereq: 2.6 GPA & Alg 2 or equiv w/C or better; OR placement value of 3400; OR Accuplacer Reading greater/equal to 80, Arith greater/equal to 65, & Elem Alg greater/equal to 61; OR ACT Reading greater/equal to 17 & Math greater/equal to 21; OR Coll Tech Math 1A OR Int Alg w/C or better)
10-660-101 DIGITAL 1: LOGIC ...AND, OR, NOT, NAND, NOR, logic operation using switch logic, ladder logic, and gate logic. Simplification methods using Boolean theorems and Karnaugh Maps, and timing diagram analysis.
10-660-102 DIGITAL 2: SEQUENTIAL ...operation and connection of latches, RS flip-flops, JK flip-flops, and D flip-flops using timing diagram analysis, and some simple applications are studied. (Corequisite: 10-660-101, Digital 1: Logic)
10-664-100 AUTOMATION 1: CONTROL LOGIC ...electric motor control components such as switches, relays, starters, transformers; and safely mount and install motor and motor control components and perform related wiring and troubleshooting of motor control circuits.
10-664-101 AUTOMATION 2: MOTOR CONTROL ...electric motor control components such as sensors, timers and counters. (Corequisite: 10-664-100, Automation 1: Control Logic)
SEMESTER TOTAL
16
THIRD SEMESTER
10-482-133 PHOTOVOLTAICS-ADVANCED ...topics include batteries, wiring configurations, system diagramming, National Electrical code, component selection, wiring, safety and system maintenance. (Prerequisites: 10-482-126 Intro to Solar; 10-660-104, DC 1: Intro; 10-660-105, DC 2: Circuits; 10-620-107, AC 1: Properties)
10-483-107 SOLAR THERMAL DESIGN & SITE ...learn steps to performing a site audit prior to installation of a solar thermal system. Focus on defining the solar window, system site placement and sizing, lead analysis and energy efficiency. (Prerequisite: 10-482-126, Intro to Solar)
10-605-157 POWER ELECTRONICS 1: DEVICES ...the device characteristics and applications of thyristors, power transistors, and switching devices.
10-605-158 POWER ELECTRONICS 2: DRIVES ...power circuitry of AC and DC drives and basic setup and application of an industrial DC and AC drives to DC and AC motors. (Corequisite: 10-605-157, Power Electronics 1: Devices)
10-801-136 ENGLISH COMPOSITION 1 ...learners develop knowledge/skills in planning, organizing, writing, editing. Students will also analyze audience/purpose, use elements of research, format documents using standard guidelines, and develop critical reading skills. (Prerequisite: Placement value of 1500; OR Accuplacer Rdg score greater/equal to 55 AND Sentence Skills greater/equal to 75; OR ACT Rdg score greater/equal to 16 AND Eng greater/equal to 18; OR preparatory courses-contact academic advisor at 920-498-5444)
10-481-114 INTRO TO ENERGY MANAGEMENT ...introduces the basic concepts of energy, utility systems and utility rate structures; defines the need for energy management as an integral part of society at all levels. The course will present the various opportunities available to energy management students.
10-403-100 BLUEPRINT READING INTRO ...develop the knowledge skills process and understanding of site plans, footings and foundations, floor plans, elevations, below-grade piping, above-grade piping, isometric piping diagrams, schedules and details, electrical floor plans, lighting, ventilating, and air conditioning.
SEMESTER TOTAL
16
FOURTH SEMESTER
10-483-108 SOLAR THERMAL-ADVANCED ...topics include safety, system design and layout, component selection, mounting collectors, plumbing and insulation copper pipe, storage tank installation, heat exchanger and circulation pump. (Prerequisite: 10-482-126, Intro to Solar)
10-483-106 SOLAR ADVANCED SYSTEM DESIGN ... troubleshooting and repairing renewable thermal and electric equipment; diagnosing faulty equipment; selecting replacement parts; preparing a detailed work order. (Prerequisites: 10-483-107, Solar Thermal Design & Site; 10-482-132, Photovoltaics-Design & Site; 10-482-133, Photovoltaics-Adv; Corequisite: 10-483-108, Solar Thermal Advanced)
10-801-197 TECHNICAL REPORTING ...principles of report writing and correspondence, proposals, feasibility reports, progress reports, investigation reports, evaluation reports, meeting reports, memos, and correspondence. (Prerequisite: 10-801-136, English Composition I OR 10-801-195, Written Communication with “C” or better)
10-809-198 INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY ...survey of theoretical foundations of human behavior such as sensation and perception, motivation, emotions, learning, personality, psychological disorders, therapy, stress, and human diversity in personal, social and vocational settings. (Prerequisite: Cumulative GPA of 2.6 or greater OR satisfactory reading and writing assessment scores OR 10-831-107, College Reading and Writing 1 with "B" or better OR Corequisite: 10-831-102, English Comp Prep)
10-809-172 INTRO TO DIVERSITY STUDIES...basic American values of justice and equality by teaching vocabulary, history of immigration/conquest, transcultural communication, legal liability, multicultural majority/minority relations, ageism, sexism, gender, sexual orientation, the disabled/ADA. (Prerequisite: A placement value of 6200; OR Accuplacer Rdg score greater/equal to 55 AND Sentence Skills greater/equal to 60; OR ACT Rdg score greater/equal to 16 AND English greater/equal to 15; OR prep courses-contact academic advisor at 920-498-5444)
SEMESTER TOTAL
17
TOTAL CREDITS
66
Curriculum Note
. The credit for 10-890-101, College 101 is an institutional requirement for graduation. Consequently, it is not part of the program credit requirements, but must be passed with a C or better.
. Students completing General Studies courses at NWTC must earn a "C" or better in English Composition to enroll in Technical Reporting.
. Students completing College Technical Math 1A must earn a "C" or better to enroll in College Technical Math 1B.

Program Outcomes

• Evaluate the energy use of commercial and residential buildings and perform site assessments for solar electric and solar thermal systems
• Generate technical project proposals and estimates for solar electric and solar thermal systems
• Read and comprehend mechanical blueprints
• Upload and download information from remote and local networks to aid in the operation and maintenance of systems
• Obtain, complete, and understand zoning regulations, building permit, utility intertie connection, and utility distributed generation agreements
• Assist in design, install and maintain solar electric systems
• Assist in design, install and maintain solar thermal systems
• Ensure compliance with the national electrical code
• Provide training to user upon project completion
• Install, troubleshoot, repair and modify mechanical and electrical systems including programmable controllers

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Start here. Finish at a four-year.

NWTC transfer programs are offered through collaborative agreements with our four-year college and university partners. See where your associate degree credits will transfer >> EXCLUDEEND

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Study Abroad Opportunities

The International Studies staff continually seeks opportunities for students to travel abroad for educational experiences that may be offered in association with program courses. To find out more about which of your program courses may offer an opportunity during this academic year, contact your academic advisor.

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