Team Germany Wins Solar Decathlon (followed by IL & CA)

Team Germany

In the end, it came down, appropriately, to solar power.

The German team‘s emphasis on solar electrical production allowed their house to edge out entries by Illinois (#2) and California (#3), in the final competition of the 2009 Solar Decathlon: Net metering.

If you’re not familiar with that term, write it down, because it’s one of the keys to the solar revolution (in addition to helping Germany win this year’s competition). Net metering is both a technological term and a policy decision. On the technology side, net metering is the ability to generate more solar power than your house consumes. Policy-wise, it is the legal ability to sell that excess power back to your utility.

Where are the solar panels on the German entry? Well, if you’re standing outside looking at the house, you’re looking at them. The cube-shaped home has a skin made of solar cells, giving it a capacity of 11.1-kW — roughly twice as much power as the house uses.

On top, the roof is made of highly efficient silicon panels. But the sides are covered with thin-film solar cells that don’t use silicon. The thin-film cells have two advantages, however. They are cheaper to produce than silicon photovoltaic cells (PV), and they produce more energy on cloudy days. We’ll have to talk with Decathlon officials to determine if the thin-film PVs helped put the Germans over the top. We do know, however, that the German team scored all 150 points possible in the net-metering segment, with second place Illinois getting 137.236 points and the number three Cali team earning 100.239 points.

Visit the Solar Decathlon site, here.

To see a photo gallery of the solar homes, go here.

The final score totals are below along with team rankings. We’ll be back with more later in the day.

1. Team Germany 908.297 Architecture: 94 points (ranked # 3)Market Viability: 91 points (ranked # 5)Engineering: 91 points (ranked # 4)Lighting Design: 69.75 points (ranked # 3)Communications: 53.25 points (ranked # 15)Comfort Zone: 92.008 points (ranked # 1)Hot Water: 95.2 points (ranked # 2)Appliances: 89.051 points (ranked # 5)Home Entertainment: 87.038 points (ranked # 4)Net Metering: 150 points (ranked # 1)
2. Illinois 897.300 Architecture: 77 points (ranked # 12)Market Viability: 86 points (ranked # 14)Engineering: 88 points (ranked # 5)Lighting Design: 70.5 points (ranked # 2)Communications: 60.75 points (ranked # 10)Comfort Zone: 91.652 points (ranked # 2)Hot Water: 100 points (ranked # 1)Appliances: 93.537 points (ranked # 1)Home Entertainment: 92.625 points (ranked # 1)Net Metering: 137.236 points (ranked # 2)
3. Team California 863.089 Architecture: 98 points (ranked # 1)Market Viability: 92 points (ranked # 3)Engineering: 95 points (ranked # 2)Lighting Design: 68.25 points (ranked # 6)Communications: 69.75 points (ranked # 1)Comfort Zone: 63.088 points (ranked # 14)Hot Water: 95 points (ranked # 3)Appliances: 92.58 points (ranked # 2)Home Entertainment: 92.183 points (ranked # 2)Net Metering: 100.239 points (ranked # 12)
4. Team Ontario/BC 849.816 Architecture: 91 points (ranked # 5)Market Viability: 89 points (ranked # 9)Engineering: 79 points (ranked # 15)Lighting Design: 69 points (ranked # 5)Communications: 66.75 points (ranked # 2)Comfort Zone: 91.337 points (ranked # 3)Hot Water: 94.25 points (ranked # 4)Appliances: 89.208 points (ranked # 4)Home Entertainment: 71.36 points (ranked # 9)Net Metering: 109.911 points (ranked # 3)
5. Minnesota 838.544 Architecture: 81 points (ranked # 9)Market Viability: 91 points (ranked # 5)Engineering: 96 points (ranked # 1)Lighting Design: 72 points (ranked # 1)Communications: 58.5 points (ranked # 12)Comfort Zone: 78.344 points (ranked # 6)Hot Water: 88.35 points (ranked # 5)Appliances: 91.17 points (ranked # 3)Home Entertainment: 87.649 points (ranked # 3)Net Metering: 100.531 points (ranked # 10)
6. Team Alberta 769.410 Architecture: 80 points (ranked # 10)Market Viability: 81 points (ranked # 17)Engineering: 77 points (ranked # 17)Lighting Design: 65.25 points (ranked # 8)Communications: 62.25 points (ranked # 9)Comfort Zone: 79.629 points (ranked # 5)Hot Water: 79.05 points (ranked # 9)Appliances: 62.15 points (ranked # 13)Home Entertainment: 86.448 points (ranked # 5)Net Metering: 100.134 points (ranked # 14)
7. Cornell 764.237 Architecture: 70 points (ranked # 16)Market Viability: 89 points (ranked # 9)Engineering: 81 points (ranked # 13)Lighting Design: 65.25 points (ranked # 8)Communications: 66.75 points (ranked # 2)Comfort Zone: 64.453 points (ranked # 13)Hot Water: 85.65 points (ranked # 6)Appliances: 56.182 points (ranked # 14)Home Entertainment: 85.764 points (ranked # 6)Net Metering: 100.188 points (ranked # 13)
8. Rice 750.236 Architecture: 95 points (ranked # 2)Market Viability: 93 points (ranked # 2)Engineering: 84 points (ranked # 10)Lighting Design: 63 points (ranked # 14)Communications: 64.5 points (ranked # 5)Comfort Zone: 67.083 points (ranked # 10)Hot Water: 85 points (ranked # 7)Appliances: 51.307 points (ranked # 17)Home Entertainment: 48.095 points (ranked # 19)Net Metering: 100.251 points (ranked # 11)
9. Kentucky 732.152 Architecture: 71 points (ranked # 15)Market Viability: 84 points (ranked # 16)Engineering: 77 points (ranked # 17)Lighting Design: 57 points (ranked # 20)Communications: 51.75 points (ranked # 17)Comfort Zone: 64.889 points (ranked # 12)Hot Water: 77.7 points (ranked # 11)Appliances: 70.124 points (ranked # 7)Home Entertainment: 74.915 points (ranked # 8)Net Metering: 104.774 points (ranked # 5)
10. Ohio State 729.932 Architecture: 82 points (ranked # 8)Market Viability: 91 points (ranked # 5)Engineering: 84 points (ranked # 10)Lighting Design: 57.75 points (ranked # 19)Communications: 64.5 points (ranked # 5)Comfort Zone: 82.36 points (ranked # 4)Hot Water: 62.25 points (ranked # 16)Appliances: 51.257 points (ranked # 18)Home Entertainment: 60.492 points (ranked # 17)Net Metering: 101.323 points (ranked # 7)
11. Team Missouri 719.530 Architecture: 64 points (ranked # 18)Market Viability: 87 points (ranked # 11)Engineering: 72 points (ranked # 19)Lighting Design: 65.25 points (ranked # 8)Communications: 60.75 points (ranked # 10)Comfort Zone: 50.78 points (ranked # 19)Hot Water: 85 points (ranked # 7)Appliances: 64.784 points (ranked # 9)Home Entertainment: 70.754 points (ranked # 11)Net Metering: 100.712 points (ranked # 9)
12. Iowa State 714.609 Architecture: 61 points (ranked # 20)Market Viability: 92 points (ranked # 3)Engineering: 88 points (ranked # 5)Lighting Design: 63 points (ranked # 14)Communications: 66 points (ranked # 4)Comfort Zone: 66.643 points (ranked # 11)Hot Water: 71.35 points (ranked # 14)Appliances: 43.207 points (ranked # 19)Home Entertainment: 64.045 points (ranked # 14)Net Metering: 101.365 points (ranked # 6)
13. Virginia Tech 704.628 Architecture: 94 points (ranked # 3)Market Viability: 90 points (ranked # 8)Engineering: 88 points (ranked # 5)Lighting Design: 65.25 points (ranked # 8)Communications: 56.25 points (ranked # 13)Comfort Zone: 71.817 points (ranked # 8)Hot Water: 56.65 points (ranked # 17)Appliances: 42.852 points (ranked # 20)Home Entertainment: 47.871 points (ranked # 20)Net Metering: 100.938 points (ranked # 8)
14. Team Spain 669.565 Architecture: 72 points (ranked # 14)Market Viability: 80 points (ranked # 18)Engineering: 84 points (ranked # 10)Lighting Design: 60 points (ranked # 16)Communications: 55.5 points (ranked # 14)Comfort Zone: 54.037 points (ranked # 18)Hot Water: 33 points (ranked # 19)Appliances: 63.94 points (ranked # 11)Home Entertainment: 65.871 points (ranked # 12)Net Metering: 109.216 points (ranked # 4)
15. Team Boston 665.596 Architecture: 87 points (ranked # 6)Market Viability: 87 points (ranked # 11)Engineering: 80 points (ranked # 14)Lighting Design: 64.5 points (ranked # 12)Communications: 63 points (ranked # 7)Comfort Zone: 58.302 points (ranked # 17)Hot Water: 78.5 points (ranked # 10)Appliances: 53.383 points (ranked # 16)Home Entertainment: 52.905 points (ranked # 18)Net Metering: 44.007 points (ranked # 15)
16. Penn State 625.995 Architecture: 67 points (ranked # 17)Market Viability: 87 points (ranked # 11)Engineering: 93 points (ranked # 3)Lighting Design: 69.75 points (ranked # 3)Communications: 63 points (ranked # 7)Comfort Zone: 59.704 points (ranked # 16)Hot Water: 63.65 points (ranked # 15)Appliances: 53.939 points (ranked # 15)Home Entertainment: 70.952 points (ranked # 10)
17. Puerto Rico 617.569 Architecture: 74 points (ranked # 13)Market Viability: 85 points (ranked # 15)Engineering: 85 points (ranked # 9)Lighting Design: 66 points (ranked # 7)Communications: 42 points (ranked # 20)Comfort Zone: 70.186 points (ranked # 9)Hot Water: 75 points (ranked # 12)Appliances: 63.978 points (ranked # 10)Home Entertainment: 61.405 points (ranked # 16)
18. Arizona 610.339 Architecture: 86 points (ranked # 7)Market Viability: 79 points (ranked # 19)Engineering: 87 points (ranked # 8)Lighting Design: 60 points (ranked # 16)Communications: 45 points (ranked # 19)Comfort Zone: 49.289 points (ranked # 20)Hot Water: 73.25 points (ranked # 13)Appliances: 69.658 points (ranked # 8)Home Entertainment: 65.141 points (ranked # 13)
19. Univ. of Louisiana 603.882 Architecture: 78 points (ranked # 11)Market Viability: 97 points (ranked # 1)Engineering: 79 points (ranked # 15)Lighting Design: 63.75 points (ranked # 13)Communications: 52.5 points (ranked # 16)Comfort Zone: 72.082 points (ranked # 7)Hot Water: 7.2 points (ranked # 20)Appliances: 78.319 points (ranked # 6)Home Entertainment: 76.032 points (ranked # 7)
20. WI-Milwaukee 542.074 Architecture: 64 points (ranked # 18)Market Viability: 76 points (ranked # 20)Engineering: 67 points (ranked # 20)Lighting Design: 60 points (ranked # 16)Communications: 48.75 points (ranked # 18)Comfort Zone: 62.879 points (ranked # 15)Hot Water: 45 points (ranked # 18)Appliances: 62.227 points (ranked # 12)Home Entertainment: 63.718 points (ranked # 15)

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