Sunday, November 1, 2009

DOE Solar Decathalon Winners_Let the Sun Shine on Innovation

When I was in graduate school in the the early 1990's sustainable design was just getting off of the ground in the way we know it now. (I know it's been around since Mesa Verde, but the current generation of thinking)

I wish programs such as the Solar Decathalon held each year in the fall in Washington D.C. were around then. It is sponsored by the US Dept of Energy and teams from universities and colleges from all across the world compete in it. It provides an oppourtunity for pursuing design innovation and experiential learning on a small solar home scale. What a fantastic all around oppourtunity!

The program has six-goals worth noting. The basic premise is to invigorate interest, research and developing marketable technologies able to be brought to the market-place. Another one is to help develop zero energy homes which is something many of us want to know more about.

The winners this year, especially the top three, offer a wide ranging view of how to solve the design challenge. Check out the winners! I wonder if teams from Norwich University or Yestermorrow Design Build School have ever entered? It seems like this program would be right up their respective areas of focus. I'll have to check with friends who teach there.

See photostreams of the homes on Flickr and Hi-res Gallery of Homes on the DOE site.

Enjoy seeing what the next generation of design leaders are up to!

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