Solar Decathlon

100 % Solar Powered house.... who knew they could be so cute?!?

Université de Montréal, Mtl, Qc

So the news last night was a good starting point for today's post. My local PBS affiliate (have I mentioned that I heart PBS?) aired a story on the 2007 Solar Decathlon.

What is the Solar Decathlon you ask?

It's a worldwide competition where universities present their working model of a completely self-sustainable, solar powered house. The houses are judged on their engineering and innovation as well as on their aesthetics and "livability". Oh yeah, and each house has to produce enough energy to charge an electric car!!

While the winning house presented by the Technische Universitat Darmstadt (Germany)
came at the hefty price tag of $600 000 USD , University of Illinois's entry cost $160 000 USD and was built from commonly available materials such as simple cedar panels. They won the Market Viability section of the competition.

All this to say, if we can build a fully solar powered house for about the same price as a "conventional" house, why aren't we all building our own homes?

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