Solar Decathlon 2017 - Denver, Colorado, October 5 - 15

  • 5 October 2017 To 15 October 2017
  • Event Host : US Department of Energy
  • Event Location : 61st & Peña Station, University of Colorado A line commuter rail, 6045 N. Richfield St, Denver, CO, 80249, United States
Solar Decathlon 2017 - Denver, Colorado, October 5 - 15
Event Description

The U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon is a collegiate competition made up of 10 contests that challenge student teams to design and build full-size, solar-powered houses. The winner of the competition is the team that best blends design excellence and smart energy production with innovation, market potential, and energy and water efficiency. Simply put, there's nothing else like it.

According to Kristin Madding at the Department of Energy, "A free event that will blow your mind is about to land in the Denver area. It’s the Solar Decathlon: a multiday, multiteam, multidisciplinary competition that pits collegiate teams against one another in categories of design, engineering, energy, and more. (Goosebumps!) It’s essentially the national championship of solar home building. But, instead of tossing the ole pigskin, teams from the United States, Switzerland, and the Netherlands are building full-size houses featuring the latest sustainability tech to compete in 10 contests. It’s … kind of a big deal."

Here are a summary Kristin's top 10 Reasons to Visit the Decathlon:

#1: It’s easily accessible for Coloradans … and did we mention it’s FREE?
#2: Our opening ceremonies? Think Olympics. (They're kidding, but join Oct 5 at 9:30 am)
#3: The house tours. ’Nough said.
#4: You can bring the kids … and they’ll heart it.
#5: Sometimes winning IS everything.
#6: You can test drive your dream EV.
#7: You can workshop your way to “Expert.”
#8: You can recruit up-and-coming STEM leaders.
#9: It’s not a water park, but there’s a water theme.
#10: You don’t even have to leave your home. Wait. Wha? (online options)

To read Kristin's full Top Ten blog:

  • Host Company/Organization Name
    • US Department of Energy
  • Agenda
    • The Solar Decathlon village and competition houses are open to the public, free of charge on nine days over two long weekends:

      Thursday, Oct. 5–Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
      Monday, Oct. 9, 2017: 1 p.m.–7 p.m.
      Thursday, Oct. 12–Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
      During the remaining dates and times, the Solar Decathlon village is closed to the public for competition activities.

      Solar Decathlon 2017 features several activities in addition to the competition, including:

      -Tours of the Solar Decathlon houses and village
      -Solar Decathlon education events, including workshops for consumers and professionals, and Education Days for middle schools
      -The Sustainability Expo at Solar Decathlon.


      Visitors can tour the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2017 competition houses during public exhibit hours:

      Thursday, Oct. 5–Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
      Monday, Oct. 9, 2017: 1 p.m.–7 p.m.
      Thursday, Oct. 12–Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
      Two tour options are available:

      Solar Decathlon Village Tours
      Docents are available on a first-come, first-served basis to provide 20- to 30-minute walking tours of the Solar Decathlon village. These tours depart every 15 minutes from a designated location at the event site.

      Solar Decathlon House Tours
      See inside the Solar Decathlon houses and meet the team members who built them on a house tour. Each Solar Decathlon team provides approximately 15-minute tours of its competition house during public exhibit hours.


      Celebrate the Solar Decathlon with these competition events:

      Opening Ceremony
      Join us as we kick off the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2017! The Opening Ceremony takes place 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017.

      Contest Winner Announcements
      The first-, second-, and third-place winners of these contests will be announced as follows:

      Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017, 10 a.m.–Architecture Contest and Water Contest
      Friday, Oct. 13, 2017, 10 a.m.–Communications Contest and Innovation Contest
      Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017, 9:30 a.m.–Engineering Contest and Market Potential Contest (part of the Competition Awards Ceremony)
      Competition Awards Ceremony
      Join the celebration as we announce the overall winners of Solar Decathlon 2017! The final awards ceremony will take place Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017, at 9:30 a.m.


      Homeowner and Consumer Workshops
      Consumer and homeowner workshops covering topics such as residential energy efficiency and solar energy will be offered during the Solar Decathlon.

      Homeowner and consumer workshops will be offered over four days:

      Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017
      Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017
      Monday, Oct. 9, 2017
      Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017
      Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017
      A detailed schedule of homeowner and consumer workshops is available.

      Solar Training for Design Professionals
      The Solar Decathlon provides a living laboratory of examples of technical and design approaches to high-performance homes that incorporate energy efficiency and renewable energy and focus on sustainable design principles.

      A continuing education (CEU) workshop for building professionals will be held in the education tent:

      Monday, Oct. 9, 2017
      Detailed information about the workshop is available.

      The American Solar Energy Society is holding its annual conference concurrent with the Solar Decathlon and will also offer workshops for consumers and professionals.

      Education Days
      Middle-school groups can attend an all-day field trip to the Solar Decathlon. Students will be able to ask questions of a dedicated volunteer “mentor” guide, tour the Solar Decathlon village and team houses, interact with the collegiate teams, and participate in an hour-long energy workshop.

      Four Education Days are planned:

      Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017: 11 a.m.–2 p.m.
      Friday, Oct. 6, 2017: 11 a.m.–2 p.m.
      Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017: 11 a.m.–2 p.m.
      Friday, Oct. 13, 2017: 11 a.m.–2 p.m.
      These field trips are by reservation only. Grants to offset the cost of buses are available to schools. For more information about Education Days, email

      Educator Professional Development
      Solar Decathlon 2017 offers a one-day educator professional development workshop:

      Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017.
      Pre-registration is required for this workshop: please email the workshop presenter, Ray Ann Havasy, at the Center for Science Teaching and Learning.

      Detailed information about the workshop is available.

      Solar and Related Industries Career Fair
      Solar Decathlon 2017, Wells Fargo, and The Solar Foundation are offering a career fair for individuals seeking work in the solar and related industries. The fair will present opportunities for networking and connecting with hiring managers and human resources representatives from companies in the Denver area and around the country.

      Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017: 12–3 p.m.
      Please note, to make it possible for decathletes to attend this event, the Solar Decathlon village is not open to the public on Oct. 10. Attendees to the Career Fair will not be able to tour the competition houses.

      Learn more and register to attend.


      The Solar Decathlon and the American Lung Association in Colorado invite visitors to learn about the latest in electric vehicle (EV) technology and what it is like to own an EV, including:

      Available discounts and incentives for vehicles and chargers
      How electric vehicles can save money
      The great features of different electric vehicle models
      How to charge electric vehicles
      The role electric vehicles play in curbing harmful emissions
      How electric vehicles help increase U.S. energy independence.
      Qualified visitors will be able to test-drive a variety of vehicles.

      Saturday, Oct. 14, 2017: 11 a.m.–3 p.m.

      The Sustainability Expo 2017 is a consumer-facing exposition providing organizations an opportunity to showcase their energy solutions and services to the general public interested in the latest energy technologies. Visitors to the Solar Decathlon are invited to attend the Sustainability Expo free of charge during these Solar Decathlon public exhibit hours:

      Thursday, Oct. 5–Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
      Monday, Oct. 9, 2017: 1 p.m.–7 p.m.
      Thursday, Oct. 12–Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017: 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
  • Cost
    • FREE Event
  • Event type
    • Expo

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