Brooke Ellison believes in the benefits of solar power. The Harvard graduate, who is also a quadriplegic, relies on a respirator for survival. She recently received the use of a STAR trailer from Nextek to serve as the primary backup for her equipment, as part of her efforts to promote solar power.
Brook Ellison with some of the Nextek staff who made her use of the STAR trailer possible.
She heard about the STAR (Stationary or Transportable Available Resource) trailer from friends at SUNY Stony Brook. The mobile unit collects solar power via photovoltaic panels, and stores it in a series of battery packs that can be transported to individuals. The STAR has been used to provide power to people living in remote areas that do not have a connection to the grid, such as in the region of Haiti affected by a 2011 earthquake.
Nextek personnel, SUNY Stony Brook, and the State of New York all worked to make the STAR trailer available to Ellison.
Ellison was paralyzed after being hit by a car at age 11, but did not let the accident stop her pursuit of education. She graduated from Harvard in 2000, and was elected to give the class commencement speech.