Santa Clara University

80_horizons_in_engineering

School of Engineering Lands Spot in Solar Decathlon

Preliminary design concept from our architecture partners at California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo.
Preliminary design concept from our architecture partners at California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo.

The School of Engineering is teeming with excitement after being selected by the U.S. Department of Energy as one of only 20 colleges and universities in North America and Europe to participate in the 2007 Solar Decathlon—a program promoting sustainable living. Each of the participating schools will design and build a 500-square-foot solar-powered house for the competition, taking place early next fall on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

The SCU Solar Decathlon team, composed of more than 40 undergraduate engineering students working with faculty members, will use sustainable materials and cutting-edge technologies in their design. Not only will the finished product be a showcase for sustainability in the United States, it will also incorporate elements that are adaptable for the developing world. As student team leader James Bickford says, “The team is looking for solutions from a global perspective.”

Involvement in the Solar Decathlon calls students and faculty into action to carry out the School of Engineering’s vision of improving the human condition through engineering education, practice, and scholarship. The team plans to carry this project beyond the scope of the competition to support the development of a program in Sustainable Engineering Studies. They are also initiating outreach programs for the community with the aim of making a strong impact on the global society, and they invite support and participation in this process and their success. SCU President Paul Locatelli, S.J., is an enthusiastic supporter of this venture, and has offered a challenge grant of up to $50,000 that will match funds raised by the team.

For further information, contact Timothy Hight, 408-554-6870, or visit the SCU Solar Decathlon team Web site.