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Join Ready, Set, Solar Decathlon Event on September 16; Apply to Participate in Solar Decathlon by October 26

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Solar Decathlon logo

Compete in the next U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon® and join more than 25,000 students from 35 countries who have experienced the impact of this unique, life-changing competition!

New and returning collegiate institutions are encouraged to register and participate in this competition that prepares the next generation of building professionals to design and build high-performance, low-carbon buildings powered by renewables.

Ready, Set, Solar Decathlon!

Join Solar Decathlon organizers for the virtual Ready, Set, Solar Decathlon Event on September 16, 2021. All faculty and students interested in participating are encouraged to attend learn about competition expectations and resources available.

This interactive event will cover:

  • Overview of competition structure and expectations
  • Resources available to support participating teams, including Building Science Education, software licenses, Design Partners, and the Mentor Program
  • Words of wisdom from Solar Decathlon Alumni
  • Best practices for supporting a student team from experienced faculty
  • Design Challenge Division updates, including the new Retrofit Housing Division
  • Build Challenge updates, including the all local-build format, with teams constructing, measuring, and showcasing homes in their local communities. 

Register to attend today!

Apply to Compete

The Solar Decathlon Competition Guide, 2022 Design Challenge Rules, and 2023 Build Challenge Rules are now available to the public. All collegiate institutions are encouraged to apply to participate in the next edition of Solar Decathlon by October 26, 2021, at 5:00 p.m. ET. Team Applications can be submitted for both the Design Challenge and the Build Challenge.

The 2022 Design Challenge Finalist Teams and 2023 Build Challenge Participating Teams will present their projects to juries of experts in April 2022, at the Solar Decathlon Competition Event hosted by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado. At that event, the 2022 Design Challenge winners will be selected; qualifying 2023 Build Challenge Participating Teams will receive approval to proceed to the construction phase. Up to 20 advancing Build Challenge teams will receive $50,000 prizes which can be used to help defray a portion of their project costs.

About the Solar Decathlon

The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon is a collegiate competition that prepares the next generation of building professionals to design and build high-performance, low-carbon buildings powered by renewables. The Design Challenge is a one- to two-semester, design-only competition, while the Build Challenge is a two-year design-build competition.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2022, the Solar Decathlon has challenged more than 20,000 students to create efficient, affordable buildings powered by renewables, while promoting student innovation, STEM education, and workforce development opportunities in the buildings industry.

Buildings account for 75% of electricity use, 40% of total energy use, and 35% of carbon emissions in the United States. Solar Decathlon supports a key strategy for tackling climate challenges—developing a workforce well equipped to design and construct a low-carbon building stock and to deliver an equitable clean energy future.

Additional details are available on the Solar Decathlon website.

UC Boulder team working on their house

Photo of the University of Colorado, Boulder team, winners of the 2020 Build Challenge.




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