The campus of the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) sprang to life on a late April weekend as 28 teams of university students and building industry experts converged at the lab for the Challenge Home Student Design Competition.
During the inaugural competition, funded by the Energy Department's Building Technologies Office, teams of students presented their zero-energy-ready home design and construction plans to juries of national experts including the leading high-performance builders in the industry, building science professionals, and researchers.
"Buildings are critically important when it comes to reducing U.S. energy use, as they represent more than 70% of our electricity consumption and about 40% of our carbon emissions," said NREL Center Director for Buildings and Thermal Systems Chuck Kutscher. "How we build in the future will determine how successful we are at addressing climate change. NREL is very pleased to host and support this design competition because it is a way for students to learn the techniques and strategies that will be necessary to make sure that the buildings of the future get designed and built properly."
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