FHS solar-click any banner image
FCPS April 9 2014 news release announcing Saturday May 10 Mothers' Day Weekend S/SEA EXPO with photos
Fauquier High School innovative history includes solar ('74-'75) / geothermal ('13)

FHS solar-click any banner image

Fauquier County Public Schools

News Release


April 9, 2014

Karen Parkinson, Coordinator of Information

Phone (540) 422-7031





The Fauquier High School renovation and addition will be a key feature of the Science/Sustainability Energy Art Expo (S/SEA) scheduled for Saturday, May 10 from 9 a.m. -3 p.m. at the school. The new wing at Fauquier High will be open for student-conducted tours focusing on energy features including solar tubes, water retention, natural and efficient lighting, white roofs, and the geothermal heating and cooling system.


“Fauquier is now back in the national spotlight as it used to be when solar-powered heating was originally installed and operational as a live ‘Experimental Research Project’ at the school in 1974,” said Expo event planner Michael Rainger with Brighter Communities, a Virginia nonprofit organization specializing in eco-education. “How many other half-century-old high schools in Virginia have had two distinctly different renewable energy systems operational in two separate decades? None!”


Mr. Rainger noted that the solar panels installed about 40 years ago were ahead of their time for various reasons and were eventually removed. He said the innovative solar system had backup for heating on non-sunny days by switching classroom heating from one 5000-gallon tank to a second tank of equal size. In other words, two to three days of winter heating capability was always on hand. “Brilliant,” he said, “and a feature that is mostly absent from current solar-powered building heating systems!” (See photos on two following pages, courtesy of the Fauquier High School’s 1975 yearbook provided by Charlene Root, FHS art teacher.)


Featured at the Energy Art Expo will be 24 projects from the recent FCPS Science and Engineering Regional Fair, more than 50 art exhibits from the FCPS Arts Festival, results of a Fauquier High School Expo Logo contest, a 3D printer with school-made products, FCPS art made from recycled materials, information on rocket clubs, plant sales, live bands, school booths on eco-friendly programs, Fauquier County Environmental Services booth and workshops, John Marshall Soil and Water Conservation District lectures, Green Hill Mechanical geothermal on student-guided tours, as well as other local businesses, non-profits and subject matter experts.


As plans for the Expo are finalized, schools wishing to participate should communicate with Ms. Root at croot@fcps1.org while County organizations, non-profits and businesses should communicate with Mr. Rainger at Community@ER-LI.com and view progress at www.ConserveFauquier.com/expo