What is the Solar Decathlon?
In 2007, the University of Cincinnati is one of 20 universities from around the world participating in the third Solar Decathlon, a competition hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy in which teams compete to design, build and operate the most efficient, totally solar-powered home.
The competition tasks the 20 teams with building an 800 square foot house that is both architecturally beautiful and technologically innovative. It also has to be marketable. Using no power source but the sun, teams have to run appliances, cook meals, take showers and drive an electric car. In 10 distinct contests, teams earn points to determine which house is the most attractive, innovative and efficient.
After building their houses locally, teams move the structures to Washington, D.C. in October to compete on the National Mall, where the houses can be visited by hundreds of thousands of people.
Teams will be in Washington, D.C. for most of October. Public tours will be available from October 12th through October 20th. The winners will be announced on October 19th.