Office of Science Engagement

Office of Science Engagement

Renewable Energy – PHYS 299

Renewable Energy – PHYS 299

Renewable energy sources are essentially carbon-free and more sustainable than fossil or nuclear fuels. This course reflects the remarkable progress that has been made in the field in recent years. Our program is focused on learning through hands-on work. We’ll spend about one-third of our time in “the classroom,” studying renewable energy systems, their underlying physical and technological principles, their economics, their environmental impact and how they can be integrated into the World’s energy systems. The rest of the time will be in the field, getting our hands dirty, learning by doing.

While Costa Rica is well known as a World leader for conservation policies and eco-tourism, the Central American country also stands out for its environmentally oriented policies and its success in mainstreaming energy sustainability into national policy. Currently, 99.2% of the total primary energy supply in Costa Rica is of renewable type, with geothermal accounting for over a third, hydroelectric dependency not exceeding 50%, and a very small share from fossil fuels (0.6% non-sustainable biomass, and 0.2% from oil). Costa Rica also aims to cut its net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2021, its 200th birthday.

Learn about renewable energy technologies for the developing World in one of the few countries in the region that have taken a concerted structural approach to the issue of sustainable development.


Students may be eligible to apply for:



Please apply using the Education Abroad application. Applications will be open Oct. 15-Feb. 1.


Dr. Miguel Mostafa, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy and Astrophysics, Penn State University

Costa Rica

May 8 2017 – June 3 2017

3 Credits

Prerequisite(s): None

General questions


124 Ritenour Building

University Park, PA 16802

Education Abroad

Krista Miller


Undergraduate research

Dr. Tomalei Vess


Professional development

Dr. Ann Marie Daniel


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