Nationally Renowned Architect Panel Announces Judging Results at Solar Decathlon

Sunday, September 29, 2002

Design, Livability Results Important to Competing University Teams

Washington, D.C.-A panel of nationally renowned architects today announced that The University of Virginia had taken place first in the Design and Livability contest at the Solar Village on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. today. The University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez placed second and The University of Texas at Austin third.

Design and Livability is one of ten contests in the Solar Decathlon, which runs through Oct. 5., but it carries the greatest weight in the overall point score: a maximum of 200 points. The other nine contests count a maximum of 100 points each. To win, a team must blend aesthetics and modern conveniences with maximum energy production and efficiency.

"(University) should be justly proud of their win in this first contest," said Assistant Secretary of Energy for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy David Garman. "They were judged the best in this category by a panel of some of our nation's best architects."

The judges included Glenn Murcutt, William Henry Bishop Professor at Yale University; Edward Mazria, with Mazria, Riskin and Odoms, Inc.; Steven Paul Badanes, Howard Wright Endowed Chair, University of Washington; Edward Jackson, Jr., Ph.D., Director of Applied Research, American Institute of Architects; J. Douglas Balcomb, Ph.D., Research Fellow, National Renewable Energy Laboratory; and Stephanie Vierra, Assoc., American Institute of Architects and Consultant, Design Education Services.

"The Solar Decathlon will inspire these students to continue to search for new ways to design and build homes," Assistant Secretary Garman added. "They are proving that we can have homes that are attractive and comfortable and still use energy wisely."

For the competition, the solar decathletes had to figure ways to harness the power of the sun to supply all the energy for an entire household, including a home-based business, along with the transportation needs of the household and business. Each house, limited to roughly 500 square feet for purposes of the competition, will be judged on 10 criteria to determine which most efficiently employs solar energy for heating, cooling, hot water, lighting, appliances, computers and charging an electric car. Experts from DOE and NREL are measuring each home's energy production and use.

The Solar Decathlon is open to the public. Exhibits with information on each team's home, the contest and renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies are adjacent to the Solar Decathlon village on the Mall between 4th Street and 7th Street and between the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum and the west building of the National Gallery of Art.

Sponsors of the Solar Decathlon, in addition to DOE, include BP Solar, The Home Depot, EDS, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).

BP Solar, one of the world's leading solar electric companies, manufactures, designs, markets and installs a wide range of crystalline silicon and new generation thin film solar electric products and systems. With nearly 20 percent of the global market and product deployed in more than 160 countries, BP Solar offers a range of products and solutions for residential, commercial and industrial remote and grid-connected power needs. In 2001, it reported revenues of approximately $240 million, and produced more than 55 megawatts of power equipment.

Founded in 1978, The Home Depot is the world's largest home improvement specialty retailer and the largest retailer of energy conservation products, with fiscal 2001 sales of $53.6 billion. The company employs more than 300,000 associates, and has more than 1,450 stores in 49 states Puerto Rico, seven Canadian provinces, and Mexico. The company for the second year in a row was named sixth Most Admired Company in America by Fortune Magazine, which has also ranked it as America's Most Admired Specialty Retailer for eight consecutive years. Its stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange and is included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Standard & Poor's 500 Index.

EDS, the leading global services company, provides strategy, implementation, business transformation and operational solutions for clients managing the business and technology complexities of the digital economy. EDS brings together the world's best technologies to address critical client business imperatives. It helps clients eliminate boundaries, collaborate in new ways, establish their customers' trust and continuously seek improvement. EDS, with its management consulting subsidiary, A.T. Kearney, serves the world's leading companies and governments in 60 countries. EDS reported revenues of $21.5 billion in 2001. The company's stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: EDS) and the London Stock Exchange. Learn more

Since 1875, the American Institute of Architects has represented the professional interests of America's architects. Through education, government advocacy, community redevelopment and public outreach activities, the AIA and its 70,000 members work to achieve a higher standard of professionalism for architects while expressing their commitment to excellence in design and livability in our nation's buildings and cities.

NREL is a DOE national laboratory managed by Midwest Research Institute, Battelle and Bechtel. In addition to its work in solar photovoltaics and energy-efficient buildings, the lab is a leading center for research into wind energy, plant- and waste-derived fuels and chemicals, advanced vehicle design, geothermal energy and hydrogen fuel cells.

For more on the Solar Decathlon, see

For more information, please contact NREL Public Affairs at (303) 275-4090 or email

25 Years of Research Excellence


Content Editors