Tampa couple touring country in solar-powered van to teach importance of solar energy


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Those who say science isn’t cool clearly have never meet Chill Will and Margarita.

The Tampa couple owns a nonprofit aptly named Empowered By the Sun. They’re taking a cue from our sun by shining a light on the importance and value of solar energy.

“Fossil fuels are going to run out. The sun is going to be there always. If you want to keep your tools and technology running, you start investing now in solar and you’ll never run out,” Margarita said.

Chill Will is a former middle school teacher. He and Margarita break down solar education in various ways from their solar-powered DJ booth to their hands-on STEM workshops.

But what seems to be their biggest and brightest venture to date is a solar-powered van.

“There is going to be over a kilowatt of solar power on the roof, traditional glass, mono-crystal and panels. And those will feed into the electric batteries that are storing energy. Just like this box but on a much bigger scale. It takes us a few days to fully charge if we were completely empty on the tank,” said Chill Will.

The solar van will also help fuel the couple’s journey across the county. They have already booked over 30 classrooms where they will conduct solar energy workshops.

“For instance, solar-powered race car, ways they can build their own charging devices – there is a lot of stuff we want to do,” said Chill Will.

The couple hopes their cross-country mission becomes a lesson in renewable energy for other countries.

“I am from Puerto Ricco. It was struck by Hurricane Maria, where thousands of people unfortunately died due to lack of access to energy,” Margarita said. “This could be a life or death situation and if we promote renewable energy more, then we can save people’s lives.”

Chill Will and Margarita plan to hit the road in their solar van later this year.

You can learn more about their organization on the Empowered by the Sun website. You can also help support the costs of materials, workshops and scholarships on the organization’s Kickstarter page.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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