Seton Hall to host virtual solar power platform hackathon; registration is now open

University has partnered with Microsoft, Solar Landscape to give students the opportunity to learn and leverage Microsoft's services to analyze existing solar power coverage and propose expansions

Teams of students from Seton Hall University and beyond are invited to participate in a Solar Power Platform Hackathon from Oct. 21-23, a virtual event sponsored by Microsoft, the university and Solar Landscape.

Registration is now open and will close Saturday.

The event offers students the opportunity to learn and leverage Microsoft’s Power Platform and Azure Cloud services to drive an innovation mindset for students in artificial intelligence & data across multiple universities globally, giving them the opportunity to explore real-world problem areas.

The teams, which can include both undergraduate and graduate students, will conduct an initial analysis of the community solar landscape using Microsoft’s platforms (Azure and Power Platform). Microsoft will provide technical expertise to students on how to use the tools, and students can work on ideas. They will then complete a prototype application and deliver a presentation explaining their prototype, including a video demonstrating it.

The event would be conducted remotely and is expected to foster collaboration across universities.

Each team should have a maximum of six members, and there are no defined guidelines on the skillset for each team member.

The hackathon’s goal is to encourage an understanding of the deployment of community solar panel technology for electricity generation in New Jersey. The hackathon is of special relevance for students interested in data science, computer science, environmental issues and public policy.

“The Solar Power Platform Hackathon is a great opportunity for students to help address an important issue of access to clean energy in New Jersey and to learn modern technologies for data science and cloud computing. The students leverage data to develop apps that help policymakers and ordinary citizens in New Jersey with the deployment of and access to solar energy facilities,” Manfred Minimair, professor and director of the M.S. in Data Science program at Seton Hall said.

At the hackathon, a keynote speech will be delivered by Katelyn Gold, director of community engagement at Solar Landscape.

The hackathon enables students to promote sustainability and address the challenge of climate change. It provides students with an opportunity to change the solar energy landscape with their technical and critical thinking skills.

Students from all educational disciplines are encouraged to participate.