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Is your school or organization interested in participating in the next U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon? Learn more below!

Two Challenges, Ten Contests

The Solar Decathlon gives teams the option to participate in one of two Challenges: the Design Challenge or Build Challenge. No matter the challenge, all teams are evaluated across 10 Contests—hence the “decathlon” name.

Design Challenge (Annual)

Teams that compete in the annual Design Challenge create residential or commercial building designs during one or two semesters. Designs are evaluated on how well they meet the nation's rapidly evolving demand for zero energy buildings. Design Challenge teams choose to compete in one of four Divisions: Single-Family Housing, Attached Housing, Multifamily Building, and Education Building.

Registration for the 2024 Design Challenge closed on October 18, 2023.

Build Challenge (Biennial)

The Build Challenge is a two-year design-build competition, which focuses on two critical goals: to integrate high-performance design and construction education into degree programs, and to inspire the public and industry through innovations implemented by student teams. The Build Challenge encourages teams to create solutions for real-world issues in the building industry. Qualifying teams design and build houses that are displayed and measured locally in their communities.

The application period is closed for the 2023 Build Challenge. Information about the 2025 Build Challenge will be available in summer of 2023.


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