Solar architecture à la française – Winners of the Solar Decathlon 2019
The internationally renowned university competition in innovative homebuilding “Solar Decathlon Europe” has elected this year’s champions during the last two weeks of July in Szentendre, Hungary. The competition aims at demonstrating how to meet energy needs from free resources like solar energy and how to integrate these technologies with affordable and reliable architectural solutions.
“By combining technology with design, the Decathletes show us that resource responsible living does not mean compromising on comfort, quality, style or affordability” says Louise Holloway, director of the Energy Endeavour Foundation, organiser of the Decathlon in Europe and winner of the European Solar Prize 2018.
The university teams face the challenge of designing and building houses powered exclusively by renewable energies, which are then evaluated on the basis of a wide-ranging system of criteria. 10 Teams, representing 27 universities from 3 continents and 8 countries successfully maintain their qualifications for the SDE19 Competition. Single university Teams as well as teams representing university partnerships have been working hard since early 2018 on developing their exciting resource-responsible house concepts, which were then realized in full size prototypes in the official assembly phase. In ten different contests, aspects of architecture, engineering and construction, energy efficiency, sustainability, aesthetics and awareness raising as well as market potential a.o. are considered and evaluated. In addition, the SDE19 is the first competition in Solar Decathlon history with specific emphasis on resource responsible, Net Zero Energy Balance (NZEB) focused renovations of existing buildings.
The Habiter2030 team from the French national school for architecture and landscape in Lille convinced the jury across all categories with their unique and innovative approach. Their concept for climate-neutral renovations of buildings in north-western European cities includes the use of simple technical solutions in combination with innovative materials and photovoltaics covering 100+% of the energy required.
The competition is followed by a publicly accessible exhibition called “Showcase House Park” which will be open to the general public until 29 September. This year’s host city Szentendre will subsequently create a long-term sustainable park including the inspiring houses.
Since 2002, the Solar Decathlon has become the world’s most significant architectural innovation competition between universities. Organised by the non-profit Energy Endeavour Foundation, the competition final takes place in different countries with applicants from all around the world. As well as demonstrating the ability of homebuilding based on the use of renewable energy, the competition connects creative young university students from all around the world with researchers, developers and industrial partners and sponsors.
Find out more here.