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UNLV Solar Decathlon Team Wins Second Place in Communications

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DesertSol ranked second overall through eight events; fifth place in architectural design. The grand prize winner will be announced Saturday.
Campus News  |  Oct 11, 2013  |  By Megan Downs
Media Contact: Megan Downs, Office of Media Relations (702) 895-0898

The UNLV Solar Decathlon team won second place in the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon communications contest today.

Communications is one of 10 categories judged at the competition, which ends on Oct. 12. A jury of communications professionals evaluated the team's website, public exhibit materials, public tours and audiovisual presentations for clear and consistent messages, images and audience engagement.

"As a second-time juror, I was blown away by the amount of work and creativity the 2013 entries showed in their communications efforts," said Mark Walhimer of Museum Planning LLC., in a U.S. Department of Energy news release. "The top teams represented a very high level of sophistication in their brand building."

UNLV is currently ranked in the No. 2 spot overall out of 19 teams. Team Austria, which includes members from the Vienna University of Technology, is currently ranked No. 1.

Engineering contest results and the overall winner of the Solar Decathlon 2013 will be announced Oct. 12 in Irvine, Calif. at the Orange County Great Park.

Today, the DesertSol team also tied for No. 5 in the architecture contest, which judges the team on how solar and energy-efficient technologies are integrated seamlessly into the design.

In earlier contests, the team received the first place ranking in the market appeal category, which evaluated the livability, marketability, and constructability of each house and its appeal toward its target client

DesertSol tied for No. 1 in hot water, which assesses if a home's water heating system can supply all the water needed for washing and bathing.

The team ranked No. 3 in home entertainment, which measures how well the home accommodates the pleasures of living, such as sharing meals with friends and family, watching movies in a home theater, and surfing the web.

DesertSol No. 4 in comfort zone, which tasks the team with keeping the home temperature and humidity steady, uniform, and comfortable.

The international competition educates the public about energy-saving residential designs. It requires collegiate teams to design, build and maintain a sustainable solar-powered home. This is a student-run project, with guidance and support from faculty members, industry mentors and community supporters. After the competition, the DesertSol home will be installed at the Las Vegas Springs Preserve.

For more information on Team Las Vegas, visit the website, the Facebook page, or watch a video walkthrough.