Campus Amenities

U Alabama Trying Out Solar-Powered Pods

Shortly, the campus of the University of Alabama will sport a set of small, greenhouse-like structures where students can have private, socially-distanced space for their studies or relaxation. The university is working with SolarFi, a start-up that produces the pods. The Privé, as it's called, is equipped with solar panels, electrical charging points, HEPA air filters, ventilation and cooling systems.

The units can accommodate anywhere from one to 15 people, according to the company. They're constructed from a "highly resistant, fully transparent and safe polycarbonate structure," made from recycled materials and provide UV ray protection.

"I'm looking forward to spending time in the Privé pod. I always sit near the window while studying," said freshman Austin Rilling, an engineering student, in a press release. "To see SolarFi's pods on campus is like Christmas coming early. I get to study, relax in a bean bag and charge up all my devices using solar power in the pods."

"With solar energy and the Internet, we will empower students to study in nature without losing power," added SolarFi Creative Director Antonio Dixon.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.