U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon | Powered by the Sun

Solar Decathlon 2011

Team New Jersey: Rutgers — The State University of New Jersey and New Jersey Institute of Technology


Team New Jersey's entry for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2011, ENJOY House, suggests a new way of approaching high‐performance, energy‐efficient residential design. Cutting‐edge fabrication techniques meet the age‐old technology of concrete in its intelligent design. The roof's inverted‐hip shape is calibrated for optimal solar energy and rainwater collection, contributing to an architecture informed by performance criteria.

Design Philosophy

The ENJOY House integrates passive strategies, new solar technologies, and contemporary architectural ideas. Built of pre‐cast concrete insulated panels, the house requires little upkeep compared with traditional stick‐frame materials. The highly insulated building envelope and passive solar strategies significantly reduce heating and cooling loads.


Team New Jersey aims to create an affordable, functional, energy-efficient house suited to the climate of New Jersey. To accomplish these goals, the ENJOY House features:

  • Concrete panels in all roof, wall, and floor assemblies that use varied casting processes

  • Perforations that allow for daylighting and dramatically improve thermal performance

  • An inverted‐hip roof that allows for rainwater collection.


ENJOY House incorporates strategic technologies, including:

  • Evacuated solar thermal tubes that heat domestic hot water and provide preheating for the hydronic radiant floor

  • Fiberglass-framed windows that are high-performing, energy-efficient, and durable

  • A 9-kW photovoltaic system with a target daily electric output of 36 kWh

  • Energy recovery ventilators and dehumidifiers that keep cool air inside the house while providing fresh air from outside.

Market Strategy

The ENJOY House is intended for a couple that retires to the Jersey shore. With a retiree's needs in mind, the team has designed a 960-ft2 (89-m2) house that is ADA-accessible. Team New Jersey has integrated universal design principles into its architecture to create a house that is accessible to people of all ages and levels of mobility.


Clinton J. Andrews
E.J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
33 Livingston Ave. #302
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Phone: 732-932-3822 x721
Fax: 732-932-2253

Photo of a group of people on a patio near the ocean. Enlarge image

The members of Team New Jersey (courtesy of Team New Jersey).

Illustration of ENJOY House. Several people mill about outside. Enlarge image

A computer-generated rendering of Team New Jersey's ENJOY House (courtesy of Team New Jersey).

A video walkthrough of Team New Jersey's Solar Decathlon house.

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