UC Davis Today: D-Lab: Generating sustainable energy in developing countries

Kurt Kornbluth showing how a wind generator works to a group of people.

D-Lab: Generating sustainable energy for developing countries

The D-Lab is an example of how UC Davis uses its strengths in teaching, research and public service to address the world’s most pressing problems.

At the D-Lab, which stands for "dialogue, design, development and dissemination," graduate students and faculty are helping to find innovative and holistic solutions for complex energy issues in developing countries.

As part of the Program for International Energy Technologies, the D-Lab is interdisciplinary in scope, offering workshops and involving teams of students and faculty from business, engineering and the sciences who collaborate on renewable energy projects for under-resourced communities.

Examples include irrigation in India, hydroelectric power in Rwanda, waste-to-fuel in Malawi, biogas in Tanzania and truck coolers in Thailand. 

It all starts in the classroom, where the D-Lab curriculum includes lectures, guest speakers, case studies and practical hands-on lab learning. Throughout the year, students work with international partner communities, and on the research front, teams explore technological and social tools for sustainable energy success. 

The D-Lab illustrates how UC Davis is a leader in the sustainable energy. Read more about how the university is becoming a destination and model for sustainable energy change

Kurt Kornbluth, director of both the D-Lab and Program for International Energy Technologies, demonstrates to students how the turbine-less wind generator works with PVC, a band, magnets, wire and bolts to produce power to light a bulb. Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis photo

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