When each FPL Next Generation Solar Education Station is complete, it will supply 5 kilowatts of solar electricity. The solar installation will save the schools about $800 each year in electricity costs while giving teachers a way to focus science education on main energy technologies of the future.

Photovoltaic panels convert sunlight directly into electricity, which will facilitate power the school’s lighting and air-conditioning systems, particularly on hot days when demand for electricity is at its highest. Any surplus power will be fed into the electrical grid to offset electric costs. The FPL group foundation is paying for the installation of the six solar arrays this year as part of a pilot program. The foundation is partnering on this initiative with SunPower Corp., and the company that designed and is building FPL’s commercial-scale photovoltaic solar sites in DeSoto and Brevard counties.

The recipients of the Next Generation Solar Education Stations are:

— Mandarin Lakes Academy K-8 Center, Homestead (Miami-Dade County)

–Deerfield Beach Middle School (Broward County)

— SunCoast Community High School, Riviera Beach (Palm Beach County)

— J.D. Parker Elementary School, Stuart (Martin County)

— Hinson Middle School, Daytona Beach (Volusia County)

— L.A. Ainger Middle School, Rotunda West (Charlotte County)

“The next generation of Floridians will live in a world where renewable energy is a central part of the economy and our way of life. The Next Generation Solar Education Stations we are building will give students a head start on understanding the critical role solar power will play in that future,” said FPL president and chief executive officer Armando J. Olivera.

“We congratulate FPL on its on-going leadership in the development of renewable energy,” said Howard Wenger, president, global business units for SunPower. “SunPower is proud to partner with FPL on this initiative. It is our hope that these systems in Florida’s schools inspire new generations of informed energy consumers to be advocates for our environment and clean, renewable solar power.”

Unlike most small-scale photovoltaic solar arrays, which are mounted on rooftops, FPL’s Next Generation Solar Education Stations will be mounted on the ground to maximize their effectiveness as a teaching tool. The FPL Group Foundation also will provide teacher training and curriculum materials to help create age-appropriate renewable energy lessons for students.

In addition to these six Next Generation Solar Education Stations, FPL also is the first company to bring commercial-scale solar power to Florida. The company will build three solar sites around the state totaling 110 megawatts of emissions-free energy. When complete, these projects will make Florida the No. 2 producer of solar energy in the nation and strengthen FPL Group’s position as the nation’s clean energy leader.