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Construction Continues at Solar Decathlon Europe

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

With big trucks rolling onto the Villa Solar throughout the night, the Solar Decathlon Europe competition site is quickly taking shape. Many team sites contain houses that are already half built. Others are still nearly empty lots. The Tianjin and Helsinki houses are currently stuck in cargo containers in the port of Valencia, Spain, which is experiencing a strike. Solar Decathlon Europe organizers are working with Spanish government officials to get the containers released. In the meantime, these teams wait and watch their competitors hard at work.

Virginia Tech is in a good position. The team’s house arrived by truck late last night, and it’s now onsite, fully wrapped in plastic. Lumenhaus, which has been assembled and disassembled several times already, is essentially one piece. The team will easily put the finishing touches on the house and be ready to compete.

The University of Florida team, which worked in Spain the past two weeks to assemble its house into two pieces, is still waiting for its house to arrive in the Villa Solar. The house experienced some difficulties in transport last night but will hopefully be onsite tomorrow morning. Meanwhile, the team members are in good spirits but eager to get started. They’ve been working to grade their site and make it ready for building.

Madrid was unusually cool and breezy day today. Right now, a soft rain is falling. Perhaps this will still the dust. It’s a welcome relief from yesterday’s scorching conditions.

Carol Anna is the communications manager of the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon. Throughout the Solar Decathlon Europe competition, U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon organizers are reporting from Madrid.

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