Skip to main content
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Flickr
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • YouTube
  • Google+
Denver, Colorado
October 5-15, 2017

Swiss Team: École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, School of Engineering and Architecture Fribourg, Geneva University of Art and Design, and the University of Fribourg

Team website:

The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2017 Swiss Team brings together students from four universities to build the Swiss Living Challenge house. More than just a single solar-powered house, the project seeks to promote community spirit by offering a place where citizens can learn how to share more and use fewer resources.

Design Philosophy

The Swiss Living Challenge house is designed with multifunctional spaces that can change to meet the needs of the community—from a dining space for a community meal to a conference room for educational workshops to a bike-repair shop or local market. This flexibility ensures that, over time, the house will meet the needs of the greatest number of occupants while using the least amount of land and facilitating strong connections within the neighborhood.


    Planned Features and Technologies

    • Use of a laminated veneer lumber for the house as well as the furniture within the house. This structural product provides the team significant dimensional flexibility in the design, and allows small trees to be converted into larger planks.
    • A productive envelope surface—including the walls and the roof—that can produce solar electricity, collect the heat from the sun for water and space heating, collect water, and grow food
    • A zero-water toilet that uses worms to treat and recycle waste.



    Samuel Cotture
    +41 79 515 37 12