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Solar-powered umbrellas on campusInformation Technology Services has helped bring 12 solar-powered patio umbrellas to UNC-Chapel Hill.

Located near the Pit and at other spots around campus, the umbrellas enable technology users sitting at the patio tables to conveniently charge small electronic devices. Affixed atop the umbrellas, the solar panels power a charging station that offers three USB ports at each table.

“This project was a great opportunity to blend technology and sustainability,” said CIO Chris Kielt. “And we were happy to be a part of it.”

Brent Comstock, a student representative with the Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee (FITAC) and the head of student government’s technology and Web committee, shared similar enthusiasm. “It’s exciting to see the University install something that covers two of the biggest subjects on campus: technology and sustainability,” Comstock said.

Solar-powered umbrellas on campus
“This is one of the many ways on campus in which the two can intersect. I’m excited to see what comes next.”

The project involved many campus partners in addition to ITS and student government’s Renewable Energy Special Projects Committee, including Carolina Dining Services, the Residence Hall Association and the Student Union.

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