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Fun in the sun: Arizona engineer pitches solar amusement park

PHOENIX — A former Arizona State University professor who loves the sun is hot to build a solar amusement park near Scottsdale next year.

Joe Hui, whose energy-research company Monarch Power created a solar panel for Lotus sports cars, is trying to raise $5 million for that park and a solar gigafactory through crowdfunding.

“I want the Solar Wonderland to help our students to get excited about learning physics and how to live a sustainable lifestyle,” Hui told the Phoenix Business Journal. The retired electrical engineering and energy professor emeritus added, “I want a smarter science museum to raise the level of science education. It’s also a place where I can market my inventions.”

The site he has selected for Solar Wonderland is near the Loop 101 and Via de Ventura in Scottsdale. According to the company’s website, rides would teach visitors about electromagnetics, kinetic energy and the power of parabolic mirrors, which were used in lighthouses until the mid-1800s.