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DOE Solar Decathlon: About Solar Decathlon

In cleantech, Energy, entrepreneur, Environment, finance, greentech, Sustainable, Technology, technology transfer on October 13, 2009 at 8:45 pm

DOE Solar Decathlon: About Solar Decathlon.

For three weeks in October 2009, the U.S. Department of Energy will host the Solar Decathlon—a competition in which 20 teams of college and university students compete to design, build, and operate the most attractive, effective, and energy-efficient solar-powered house. The Solar Decathlon is also an event to which the public is invited to observe the powerful combination of solar energy, energy efficiency, and the best in home design.

Exact dates of the 2009 event are:

  • Oct. 1—Teams arrive at the National Mall and begin assembly of their houses
  • Oct. 8-16—Teams compete in 10 contests
  • Oct. 9-13—Houses are open to the public
  • Oct. 15-18—Houses are open to the public
  • Oct. 19-21—Teams disassemble their houses.

The Solar Decathlon houses will be open for public tours 11 a.m.­–3 p.m. Monday–Friday and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Please note that all homes will be closed Wed., Oct. 14.

The Solar Decathlon consists of three major phases:

  • Building: This is where most of the work—and the learning—happens. In addition to designing houses that use innovative, high-tech elements in ingenious ways, students have to raise funds, communicate team activities, collect supplies, and work with contractors. Although the Solar Decathlon competition receives the most attention, it’s the hard work that students put in during the building phase that makes or breaks a team.
  • Moving to the Solar Village: When it’s time for the Solar Decathlon, the teams transport their houses to the National Mall in Washington, D.C., and rebuild them on site.
  • Competing: During the competition itself, the teams receive points for their performance in 10 contests and open their homes to the public.

Purpose

The Solar Decathlon brings attention to one of the biggest challenges we face—an ever-increasing need for energy. As an internationally recognized event, it offers powerful solutions—using energy more efficiently and using energy from renewable sources.

The Solar Decathlon has several goals:

  1. To educate the student participants—the “Decathletes”—about the benefits of energy efficiency, renewable energy and green building technologies. As the next generation of engineers, architects, builders, and communicators, the Decathletes will be able to use this knowledge in their studies and their future careers.
  2. To raise awareness among the general public about renewable energy and energy efficiency, and how solar energy technologies can reduce energy usage.
  3. To help solar energy technologies enter the marketplace faster. This competition encourages the research and development of energy efficiency and energy production technologies.
  4. To foster collaboration among students from different academic disciplines—including engineering and architecture students, who rarely work together until they enter the workplace.
  5. To promote an integrated or “whole building design” approach to new construction. This approach differs from the traditional design/build process because the design team considers the interactions of all building components and systems to create a more comfortable building, save energy, and reduce environmental impact.
  6. To demonstrate to the public the potential of Zero Energy Homes, which produce as much energy from renewable sources, such as the sun and wind, as they consume. Even though the home might be connected to a utility grid, it has net zero energy consumption from the utility provider.


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Green Roof: Elevation 314

In architecture, cleantech, Energy, Science, Sustainable on October 13, 2009 at 2:46 pm

National Building Museum

Green Roof: Elevation 314.

Russell Katz from Design Conserve Develop Corp., architect and developer of the green roof at 314 Carroll Street, NW, Washington, DC and Amy Arnold, a landscape architect, discuss, ELEVATION 314, the first project in Washington, DC that has been approved to include a “green roof” as part of the storm water management system.

Green Roof: Elevation 314 from National Building Museum on Vimeo.

Green Festivals – Washington DC

In architecture, cleantech, Energy, Environment, Science, Sustainable on October 9, 2009 at 5:25 pm

At the Washington DC Green Festival™, a joint project of Global Exchange and Green America, we’re celebrating what’s working in our communities—across the District, Maryland and Virginia—for people, for business and for the environment.

You’ll enjoy more than 125 renowned speakers and 350 green businesses (start your holiday shopping now!), great how-to workshops, green films, a Fair Trade pavilion, yoga classes, organic beer, delicious organic cuisine and live music.

Find out about DC environmental initiatives; and learn how neighbors, community nonprofits and city departments are working together to make their cities healthier places to live.

via Green Festivals – Washington DC.