Buildings News

Explore our archive of buildings news stories.

Subscribe to Our Email Updates

Receive timely information about opportunities, events, and the latest news on NREL's buildings research.

Sept. 14, 2023

NREL Researchers Reveal How Buildings Across United States Do—and Could—Use Energy

Buildings are responsible for 40% of total energy use in the United States, including 75% of all electricity use and 35% of the nation's carbon emissions. Although today's decarbonization efforts often focus on renewable electricity or electric vehicles, decarbonizing the building stock is also essential.

Sept. 12, 2023

New Prize Doubles Down on Success of Earlier Community-Based Prizes

DOE is launching a new challenge that combines the Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize and the Community Clean Energy Coalition Prize, this time expanding the reach to community organizations, manufacturers, nonfederal government entities, and college students.

Aug. 29, 2023

Building Sustainable Energy Careers Through Summer Internships

For many students, a paid summer internship is the capstone of their degree—an opportunity to flex their academic and research muscles in their industry of choice.

Aug. 4, 2023

Partnerships Electrify the Future of NREL Buildings Innovation

Transforming homes, offices, schools, restaurants, hospitals, and everything in between to efficiently run on clean energy is a complex area of research. Each building presents a unique challenge—there is no one-size-fits-all approach.

July 21, 2023

Lower Energy Costs, Healthier Air: How Energy CLASS Prize Winners Are Transforming Their School

Twenty-five local education agencies were awarded $100,000 at the close of the first phase of the American-Made Energy CLASS Prize. Teams will now receive training and personalized coaching to implement health and efficiency upgrades in their schools.

July 14, 2023

Distinguished Researcher Birdie Carpenter Sets Sail After Naval Career

Alberta (Birdie) Carpenter, one of seven newly named NREL Distinguished Researchers, enjoys science but also embraces unexpected opportunities.

June 30, 2023

Department of Energy's ZEDD Program Recognizes Institutions Preparing the Next Generation's Zero-Energy Workforce

DOE's Zero Energy Design Designation (ZEDD) recognizes college programs that are committed to zero-energy education. There's still time to apply for the 2023 ZEDD cohort.

June 26, 2023

NREL Leads Conversation in Newest Buildings Trends and Techniques at 37th Annual National Home Performance Conference

NREL researchers recently brought their expertise in renewable energy and energy efficiency to over 2,600 home performance and weatherization industry professionals from across the country at the 2023 National Home Performance Conference.

June 21, 2023

Climate Justice Champions Celebrated at Finale of Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize

Six teams competing in the the inaugural Inclusive Energy Innovation Prize have been named grand prize winners after their year-long efforts to advance an equitable and just clean energy ecosystem within their communities.

June 20, 2023

NREL Windows Research Clearly Making a Difference

Builders began erecting edifices with massive walls of windows after World War II. The trend continues to this day, but the 1970s saw the adoption of double-pane windows to reduce energy consumption. Researchers at NREL have been working to improve windows since 1983.

May 23, 2023

NREL Adds Lab Space With New Building, Preps Other Projects

NREL's newest building, the Research and Innovation Laboratory (RAIL), which will house multipurpose lab space, is the first laboratory building to open at NREL's Golden, Colorado, campus since the fall of 2013.

May 22, 2023

News Release: Inflation Reduction Act Invests $150 Million in NREL Projects

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced today that NREL will begin work on a series of additions and improvements to two of its campuses made possible by $150 million in funding provided by the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA).

May 10, 2023

DOE Announces RFP Aimed at Community-Based Retrofit Solutions

A new Building America program is expected to bolster efforts to decarbonize existing U.S. residential housing.

May 5, 2023

Solar Decathlon 2023 Winners Take Zero-Energy Design and Construction to Next Level

The 2023 winners of the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon, DOE's longest-running student competition, are leading the clean energy revolution by designing and constructing better buildings.

May 2, 2023

Managing Building Efficiency in the City That Never Sleeps

Data exchange and support software developed at NREL is helping community building owners—including those in New York City—meet the national drive toward decarbonization.

April 27, 2023

Award-Winning NREL Buildings Project Bolstered by Team's Passion for Clean Energy

Wonderful memories of swimming in the local rivers of Zhejiang in eastern China led a young Yueyue Zhou toward a career in architecture and creating beautiful landscapes. But experiencing the effects of climate change firsthand and watching those rivers become polluted is what drove her to NREL.

April 26, 2023

New $22 Million-Plus Prize Lays a Solid Foundation for Equitable Building Energy Upgrades

The Buildings Upgrade Prize (Buildings UP) aims to accelerate widespread energy efficiency and building electrification upgrades.

March 28, 2023

Advanced Computing Powers 300-Plus Clean Energy Projects

In Fiscal Year 2022, NREL played a critical role in computing advancements for 300-plus clean energy research projects through high-performance computing (HPC), efficient data center operation, and state-of-the-art data visualization.

March 24, 2023

Turning Mining Waste Into a Sustainable Concrete Replacement

NREL is leading a three-year $4.38 million collaborative project from the U.S. Department of Energy's Fiscal Year 2022 Office of Fossil Energy Carbon Management Technology Commercialization Fund to turn mining waste materials into a more sustainable concrete replacement.

March 7, 2023

57 Teams Advance to Solar Decathlon 2023 Design Challenge Final

More than 300 collegiate students will visit the NREL campus in April 2023 for the Solar Decathlon Final Competition Event.

Feb. 23, 2023

Announcing the 2023 JUMP Into STEM Final Competition Winners

Students and professors from across the country, an esteemed panel of judges, and program supporters from the U.S. Department of Energy converged in Golden, Colorado, for the 2023 JUMP into STEM Final Competition.

Feb. 17, 2023

Breaking Barriers to Home Electrification Through the EAS-E Prize

Apply for EAS-E Prize Phase 1 by March 8 to compete for $2.4 million in prizes and technical assistance to accelerate fast, easy, and scalable home electrification solutions.

Feb. 15, 2023

New Energy CLASS Prize Supports School Upgrades

Schools across the United States can benefit from infrastructure upgrades—improved ventilation and increased energy efficiency is good for students, teachers, and the school's bottom line.

Feb. 9, 2023

News Release: Perovskite-Based Thermochromic Windows Reduce Energy Load and Carbon Emission in Buildings

The use of thermochromic windows in office buildings improves energy efficiency across all climate zones in the United States by modulating the temperature inside, leading to a massive savings, according to a research effort led by NREL.

Feb. 8, 2023

Leveraging NREL All-Electric HVAC Technology, Blue Frontier Earns $20 Million Development Boost

Bolstered by technologies developed at NREL, startup company Blue Frontier earned $20 million from the Bill Gates-funded Breakthrough Energy Ventures.

Feb. 2, 2023

NREL Patent Activity Climbed in FY 2022 as Researchers Recognize More Eureka Moments

NREL files an average of about 170 patent applications annually and releases roughly 48 open-source software titles.

Jan. 12, 2023

New Chapter for Ancient Place: Creating Sustainable Housing and Jobs in Rural Alaska

NREL's Cold Climate Housing Research Center is working with the Native Village of Unalakleet, a small community sprawled on Alaska's northwest coast, to create a new model of housing—an affordable, energy-efficient, adaptable house that meets the myriad challenges facing rural Alaska.

Jan. 11, 2023

Nominate a Colleague for the Solar Decathlon Richard King Award by Feb. 1!

Know an influential U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon Alum or Faculty Advisor who has impacted the clean energy economy? Nominate them for the Solar Decathlon Richard King Award by Feb. 1, 2023!


2023 | 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014