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Virginia Tech wins Solar Decathlon Middle East

Solar Decathlon challenged university students to build solar-powered sustainable homes

Virginia Tech wins Solar Decathlon Middle East
The Solar Decathlon was held at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park.

Virginia Tech has won the 2018 Solar Decathlon Middle East, which took place at the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park.

In a ceremony at the Solar Decathlon village yesterday, the Virginia Tech team was awarded the top prize for their ‘FutureHAUS' project.

The Solar Decathlon, which was organised by DEWA, tasked teams of university students with building solar-powered, sustainable homes, and took place over two weeks.

The Wollongong University team won the award for Innovation for its ‘Desert Rose' house.

Each team built a show house, which were judged on factors including architecture, engineering, sustainability, communications, energy management and efficiency, comfort, functionality and more.

The homes also took account of the cultural, social and climate conditions of the UAE.

Virginia Tech's FutureHAUS was constructed in part using pre-fabricated panels that integrate smart systems and energy efficient systems into the walls. This enables mass production of home components which can be used in building energy-positive homes.

The competition attracted 15 teams from 28 academic institutions, with 600 students from 54 nations participating.

Speaking at the awards ceremony, His Excellency Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD & CEO of Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) praised the competition for engaging young people in a project to promote innovation and sustainability.

The Solar Decathlon is an international competition created by the U.S. Department of Energy in which universities from all over the world meet to design, build and operate a grid-connected, solar powered house.

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