MAKING LAS VEGAS A BETTER PLACE TO LIVE
UNLV's solar decathlon team makes the finals
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- The University of Nevada, Las Vegas' solar decathlon team is one of 20 worldwide teams selected by the Department of Energy to design, build, and showcase a solar-powered zero-energy home. And it's making Las Vegas a better place to live.
Inside the lobby of the School of Architecture, you can see a section of the future. A zero-energy home designed, engineered, and built by UNLV students.
Alexia Chen is the project manager. Her team, made up of 15 different departments on campus, designed and will market this cutting edge house. Complete with kitchen, living room, dining room, bedroom -- the usual stuff BUT it has some unusual requirements.
Professor David Baird says this is an incredible honor for UNLV. "The goal is net zero. So that means it either produces more energy than it uses or it balances out."
Students will be judged on aesthetics, but also on marketability. And, of course, energy efficiency.
Jinger Zeng says, "You will be drawing from the grid when it's dark. But when you have power from the solar panel, you generate back up. So, overall you even it out. You reach energy balance."
Students break ground on the house in a few weeks here in Las Vegas but the competition is in Southern California. They have to be able to take the house apart and reassemble it in California.
Once there, the judges require the students to host dinner parties and do laundry -- essentially putting their house to the test. The tests will also shape the future of architecture in the Mojave desert.
The competition is in October. All 20 houses from around the world will be set up in a park so people can just stroll through them. Once the judging is complete, team UNLV's house will return to Las Vegas.
The team needs help
. This is a $700,000 project so they need building supplies, professional partnerships, and money. Click here
to see how you can help.