The renewable energy trail
This facility, opened in 1998, is an initiative devised and developed by ITER and the Tenerife island council. It is an outdoor themed trail dedicated to renewable energies and situated within a gully that traverses the Granadilla industrial estate, next to the ITER headquarters.
The main aim of the trail is to raise public awareness of renewable energy and related concepts, such as energy saving and the careful use of resources, all experienced within the actual surroundings of the ITER complex. The trail, all outdoors, features an array of equipment and practical scaled examples of the various types of renewable energy.
The trail has been created within a natural gully and around an artificial stream that runs from a pond at the head of the gully to another located at the bottom. This arrangement aims to alleviate the impact of the weather typical of this part of the island, namely strong prevailing winds and high temperatures, which have the effect of evaporating surface water and drying the vegetation.
The trail has a single route following the edge of the stream, to help ensure that anyone can make the journey on their own, without a guide. However, guided tours can also be arranged.
The various features of the renewable energy trail are arranged by themes. The reason for their order is purely didactic, starting with a general introduction to the energy supply situation and an overview of conventional and renewable sources, followed by a closer look at each of the renewables, and to end an area dedicated to how the general public can be involved in helping to resolve the energy supply problem.
The trail thus consists of the following themes:
- Introduction: Energy.
- Thermal solar energy.
- Photovoltaic solar energy.
- Wind power.
- Other renewable energy sources (“mini-hydro”, biomass, geothermal, etc).
- Ways of saving energy.
For each of these themes, which have their own distinct areas along the trail, there are two types of display:
- Renewable energy devices, namely renewable energy systems and components (solar panels, wind turbine blades, etc), together with posters describing how they work and some of their features. Some of these displays are interactive (by means of switches, levers, etc) so that visitors can engage more closely with these technologies and to gain a better understanding of how they work.
- Explanatory panels with information on each theme and its features. These panels are displayed under a pergola, providing shade to the visitors.
Map of the trail