Public Announcements


On summer break, see you back in the fall!

AEE Twin Cities will be heading into summer break. Check back in September for programs and events.

Have a great summer!


Building-integrated solar energy collecting windows

This month for our program, we will be joining the University of Minnesota - Mechanical Engineering Alumni Network for a program about a new technology being developed that allows windows to collect solar energy.  It will be interesting to see where the renewable energy frontier is headed and how this technology could have a wide range of possibilities for building-integrated energy collection.

Registration for this event is being handled through the University of Minnesota. To register, contact   Jennifer Clarke as indicated in the announcement.  Please let her know if you are an AEE member.

The event is free and refreshments will be served after the presentation.  





Mechanical Engineering Alumni Network (ME-AN) Event
Building-integrated solar energy collecting windows

Tuesday, June 27, 2017
5 p.m. - Meet and Greet
5:30 p.m. - Presentation

Mechanical Engineering Building, Room 1130
University of Minnesota
111 Church St. SE, Minneapolis


Register by Friday, June 23 by sending an email to Jennifer Clarke at or call (612) 626-9354.



About the Event

Join fellow alumni to meet Department of Mechanical Engineering Professor and Head Uwe Kortshagen and two of his graduate students, Samantha Ehrenberg and Katharine Hunter, who are using high tech silicon nanoparticles to bring the dream of windows that can efficiently collect solar energy one step closer to reality. Their discoveries could lower the cost and expand the possibilities for building-integrated solar energy collection.

The Kortshagen Group has developed technology to embed silicon nanoparticles into what they call efficient luminescent solar concentrators (LSCs). These LSCs are the key element of windows that can efficiently collect solar energy. When light shines through the surface, the useful frequencies of light are trapped inside and concentrated to the edges where small solar cells can be put in place to capture the energy.

Windows that can collect solar energy, called photovoltaic windows, are the next frontier in renewable energy technologies as they have the potential to vastly increase the surface area of buildings suitable for energy generation while not impacting the building architecture. LSC-based photovoltaic windows do not require any bulky structure to be applied onto their surface, and as the photovoltaic cells are hidden in the window frame, they blend invisibly into the built environment.


Xcel Energy Hennepin Island Hydro Generating Station

Xcel Energy provided a great tour of the Hennepin Island Hydro Generating Station.  It was interesting to learn about the history of plant as well as the different operating components of generating station.  It is the only hydro plant in Xcel Energy’s power generational portfolio in the State of Minnesota.  The turbine hall has 5 generators, four horizontal turbines and one vertical turbine.