The U.S Department of Energy (DOE) has selected finalists in the 2011 Solar Decathlon. Among the elite teams moving on is one led by Parsons The New School for Design, which worked on its proposal with students and faculty from Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy and the Stevens Institute of Technology. Twenty teams were selected to participate in this prestigious competition, which challenges college and university students from across the globe to design, build and operate an affordable, attractive, effective and energy-efficient solar-powered houses. The houses will be erected on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
The Parsons, Milano and Stevens team has raised the bar on the competition by proposing to design and build two housing modules: one that will appear on the National Mall and another that will be constructed in the Ward 7 community of Washington, D.C., in partnership with Habitat for Humanity and the D.C. government. Following the Decathlon, the house erected on the Mall will join the unit in Ward 7 to become a fully functioning solar duplex that will provide permanent housing for residents of the ward. See the Observer from February 16 for more details on the project.
Applications for the 2011 competition were evaluated by a panel of engineers, scientists, and experts from DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Teams were required to meet specific criteria to demonstrate their viability, including their ability to design and build an innovative, entirely solar-powered house, to raise additional funds, to support the project through a well-integrated curriculum, and to assemble a team necessary to carry the project through to completion. In addition, a panel of professionals from American Institute of Architects, National Association of Home Builders, the U.S. Green Building Council, building industry media, and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers evaluated conceptual designs from prospective teams. The results of their evaluations, combined with scores based on the four criteria listed above, determined the 2011 Solar Decathlon teams.
For more information on the 2011 Solar Decathlon visit: www.solardecathlon.gov.