For three weeks in October 2009, the U.S. Department of Energy hosts the Solar Decathlon (http://www.solardecathlon.org) at the nation’s capital—a competition in which 20 teams of college and university students compete to design, build, and operate the most attractive, effective, and energy-efficient solar-powered house. The Solar Decathlon is also an event to which the public is invited to witness the powerful combination of solar energy, energy efficiency, and the best in home design. The event also focuses on furthering efforts to educate the public on the importance of sustainable living.
Competing in the 2009 Solar Decathlon is Team California (http://www.refracthouse.com/), consisting of students from Santa Clara University and California College of the Arts. The team’s apparel is sponsored by SustainU, an American clothing company predicated on social, economic, and environmental sustainability.
In order to compete, the teams must construct home that are powered 100% by solar energy. They will in several categories including architecture, engineering, market viability, and level of comfort, along with several others. Team California’s home most definitely reflects the sunny climate of the west coast, virtually eliminating the need for a heating system.
The exact dates of competition and other events are as follows:
Oct. 8-16—Teams compete in 10 contests
Oct. 9-13—Houses are open to the public
Oct. 15-18—Houses are open to the public
Oct. 19-21—Teams disassemble their houses.
The Solar Decathlon houses will be open for public tours 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Monday–Friday and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Please note that all homes will be closed Wed., Oct. 14.
For more information on SustainU, please contact SustainU’s PR Representative, Anne Bowling, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (304)661-3778.