Campus Highlights: Solar Chill

Solar Chill Site RenderingSolar Chill is one of multiple ongoing student-run projects as part of UC San Diego’s Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) organization. ESW’s mission is to bring communities together to develop, implement, and share sustainable technologies and practices worldwide. The Solar Chill team saw the need to create a unique safe haven for students to de-stress. Built upon a passion for sustainability and campus unity, the team pitched the concept of delivering a solar charging station that would capture solar energy and provide shading, while incorporating sustainable seating for students to recharge both their bodies and electronic devices.

They are currently designing an off grid 1.5kW solar panel system that enables students to charge their electronics for free without pulling energy from any other sources except the sun. The UC San Diego community can relax under our beautiful structure by sitting upon our two rock-filled gabion benches that are topped with reclaimed Torrey Pinewood planks.

Solar Chill is the first student engineering project approved to be constructed on campus at UC San Diego! A pilot project is currently being implemented at UC San Diego North Campus (in between the Village and Eleanor Roosevelt College). The site is designed to be ADA compliant so that all members of the UC San Diego community are welcome. The team also has a portable 2.0 design in progress and can be implemented in nine other possible sites all around campus.

Solar Chill is the ideal combination of both sustainable and functional engineering in a convenient setting. The project’s purpose is to show that UC San Diego is a living laboratory where students can create the change they wish to see on campus. If anyone is interested in getting involved or following Solar Chill’s progress, please email the team at or view their website. Solar Chill and other student organized project information can be accessed through the Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) website.

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