Saturday, January 14, 2012

An Innovative Way To Collect Solar Energy

13-year-old Aidan Dwyer developed a new way to collect solar energy, and along the way sparked a fierce debate among scholars and scientists. He joins the News Hub to tell his story. Photo: Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal

A Youngster's Bright Idea Is Something New Under The Sun -- Wall Street Journal

Aidan Dwyer Took a Leaf from the Trees and Electrified International Debate

NORTHPORT, N.Y.—A new way of collecting solar energy has polarized scientists around the world and ignited fierce debate on the Internet, where the innovator in question has been called everything from an alien to the agent of a global conspiracy.

Maybe a better title would be an intellectual Hannah Montana. That's because the scientist, Aidan Dwyer, is 13 years old.

This past summer, Aidan won a national science competition with what seemed to be a bright idea: His research appeared to show that solar panels arrayed like the leaves on a tree collect sunlight more efficiently than traditional setups.

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