The Solar Decathlon, a signature biennial event showcasing the possibilities of solar homes tomorrow with today’s technologies, announced two things today (Feb. 13) its competitors and locations for 2015. The event will stay at Irvine, Calif.’s Orange County Great Park in 2015 and 20 collegiate teams from around the world will compete in the 10 event competition. Now the teams have until fall of 2015 to design build and transport their unique homes to the park’s grounds where they will reconstruct them for the competition.
It appears that the coming Solar Decathlon competition, the seventh in the U.S. series, will feature more collaborations than in previous iterations of the events, with each of the international schools—four in all, hailing from as far as Singapore and Germany—partnering with at least one U.S.-based school. Such collaborations can help reduce the transportation logistics while playing up on each college’s or university’s strengths.
“The Solar Decathlon provides the next generation of America’s architects, engineers, and entrepreneurs with the real world experience and training they need to strengthen U.S. innovation and support new, clean sources of energy,”said Deputy Energy Secretary Daniel Poneman.
“The Solar Decathlon can be a positive, life-changing experience for participating students,” said Solar Decathlon Director Richard King. “In addition to developing leadership, team spirit, and problem-solving skills, this competition bridges formal education with hands-on experience that helps decathletes excel once they enter the workforce.”
From the first Solar Decathlon in 2002, to the fifth event in 2011, the event was held in Washington, D.C. on the nation’s backyard, other wise known as the National Mall. However, because restoration efforts on the mall the event had to find a new home—at least while restorations are being made—and maybe permanently or perhaps it will become a traveling show—as of early 2014, no final decisions for a permanent home for the event have been announced.
Hosting the competition in D.C. gave Senators, Representatives and other government officials quick and easy access to the event. That said, the two-week 2013 Solar Decathlon at Orange County Great Park was well attended with more than 60,000 people taking advantage of the free tours of the unique homes.
At the competition in 2015 the homes will likely showcase energy efficiency measures, better PV cells and solar panels, inverters, solar thermal arrays and more. Since all such technologies have rapidly advanced every year. To learn more about the 2015 Solar Decathlon, visit: www.solardecathlon.gov.
The teams in 2015 are:
• California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
• California State University, Sacramento
• Clemson University
• Crowder College and Drury University
• Lansing Community College and Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University
• Missouri University of Science and Technology
• New York City College of Technology
• Oregon Institute of Technology and Portland State University
• Stanford University
• State University of New York at Alfred College of Technology and Alfred University
• Stevens Institute of Technology
• University of Florida, National University of Singapore, and Santa Fe College
• The University of Texas at Austin and Technische Universitaet Muenchen
• University at Buffalo, The State University of New York
• University of California, Davis
• University of California, Irvine; Saddleback College; Chapman University; and Irvine Valley College
• Vanderbilt University and Middle Tennessee State University
• West Virginia University and University of Roma Tor Vergata
• Western New England University, Universidad Tecnológica de Panamá, and Universidad Tecnológica Centroamericana
• Yale University.