Solar Decathlon Highlights
From September 23rd to October 2nd, Washington D.C.'s monuments to presidential greats and civic leaders, museums of art and history, and houses of government were juxtaposed with houses of another breed: the green and technologically-advanced. Once every two years since 2002, teams of students from all across the United States (and now all across the globe) congregate on the National Mall in a Department of Energy-sponsored competition to design and build energy-efficient, solar-powered homes. This year, in the Solar Decathlon's 5th competition, 20 teams from five countries presented their designs, which ranged from SCI-Arc and Caltech's highly conceptual "outsulated" CHIP house, to Appalachian State's Solar Homestead influenced by vernacular typologies, to the University of Maryland's WaterShed whose micro-wetland helps reduce water pollution. I toured the homes this weekend and share a few of my favorite designs.
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- Though I couldn’t make it out to Washington, DC, this weekend to see the final days of the Solar Decathlon—which wrapped up yesterday with Team Germany the winner—I have been…
- Passive heating and cooling are both cost-efficient measures that ease a new residence's burden on the earth.
- Before investing in that solar panel or hot new electric vehicle, one of the most immediate ways we can be more energy efficient is to look within our homes to find ways to consume smarter.
- Though I missed it in 2007, I did get to the US Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon in Washington DC in 2005, and wrote about it.
- In Holland, being green is not a choice, it's a governmentally enforced obligation. Architects Han van Zweiten and Gregory Kiss's project makes a case for obeying the law.
- Kykuit, the Rockefeller estate in Pocantico Hills, New York, hearkens from the days of robber barons and captains of industry.
- Take the sting out of the colder months with smart, green insulation.
- This year, Build it Green celebrates the completion of its 10,000th GreenPoint rated home.