A pair of solar panels will soon grace the roof of Tsuen Wan's CCC Kei Wai Primary School (am). The panels will give students hands-on experience in energy and environmental studies, and act as the prototype for a three-year project which could eventually lead to solar panels on hundreds of schools across the SAR. The project, Building Integrated Photovoltaics in Hong Kong Schools, is a joint venture between the Department of Architecture at the University of Hong Kong, the Architectural Services Department, the Education Department, and China Light & Power, and is initially backed by $300,000 from the Innovation and Technology Fund (ITF). The adjustable photovoltaic panels will collect solar energy and act as a shield against radiation from the Sun. They will be linked to a room where the solar energy collected will be converted into electricity to run a range of household electrical appliances. A monitoring programme will allow students to go online - to arch.hku.hk/research/schoolsBIPV - to gather information on temperature, air velocity, solar radiation, angle and attitude of the Sun, relative humidity and ultraviolet ray index. 'The point is to allow students to learn about the relations between solar energy and the different elements of weather,' said Felix Wong Yat-hang, project research assistant. Chan Chi-tung, principal of the designated prototype school, said teachers were now drawing up a curriculum to include the installation. 'We will adopt a cross-curricular approach: solar power is related to environmental studies, moral issues, science topics and many other areas,' he said. The school's afternoon section, which will move to Ma Wan next year, will be the second school to boast solar panels. A much larger project, it is due to receive $3 million from the ITF. An assessment of the project will be carried out in 2004 to decide whether it should be enlarged to benefit more schools. An eventual goal is to see panels on every school in Hong Kong, said Leung Shiu-keung, the Education Department's chief curriculum development officer for science.