The Solar Homestead is Appalachian State University's entry in the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2011. Inspired by the pioneer spirit of the early settlers in the mountain region of North Carolina, we have designed a self-sustaining zero energy home.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

We're Back on the National Mall!

The DOE released a decision today that put the Solar Decathlon back on the National Mall! The competition will take place in West Potomac Park along the path between the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials. The Solar Homestead Team would like to thank all of our supporters for helping return the competition to the nation's front lawn. We are ecstatic that the decathlon has been returned to a place of national progression and prestige. We hope to see you in September on the National Mall!

For more information concerning the DOE's announcement click HERE!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Friday, February 18, 2011

Opinions Surround the National Mall Usage

The decathlete's struggle to return the Solar Decathlon to the National Mall continues. Although the support to return the competition to the Mall is constantly increasing among teams, universities, and senators; the National Park Service is still opposed. 
An editorial published in the Washington Post argued for the removal of the competition stating that the Mall has undergone "neglect and overuse". The Post opinion article pointed out physical damages that the competition had done to the Mall in previous years and the importance of restoring the space. 
Thankfully, the public responded with Letters to the Editor concerning the original editorial. 
"Spotty grass is a sign of engagement, not shame," said Ryan Montgomery of Washington in his Letter to the Editor. Another letter highlighted our president's words concerning national progress.
"The president could not have been clearer when he said, 'The first step in winning the future is encouraging American innovation.' There is no finer example of this than the Solar Decathlon," said Alan Abrams of Washington in his letter. In these letters, the value of community involvement, creativity, and innovation are restored. 
It's YOUR National Mall, would you rather have a manicured lawn or a landmark of American involvement? 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Meet the Decathlete of the Week!

janelle wienke.

Classification: Senior Undergraduate Anthropology Major, concentration in Sustainable Development
Job Title: Outreach Coordinator 
Joined the Team: August 2010
From sending contact emails to planning Boone Green Drinks at the Headquarters, Janelle helps to coordinate events for the Solar Homestead Team. 

The Best Part? 
"I enjoy being a member of the Solar Homestead Team because I get to be a part of such a prestigious and  large project. The experience has enabled me to get hands-on experience and expand my education within the field."
Outside of the Team: 
"I don't have hobbies. The Solar Homestead is my hobby."
With the little free time Janelle has, she likes to hike, cook, and do crafts.
Beverage of Choice: Black Coffee
Random Question of the Day: 
Would you rather have x-ray vision or bionic hearing? 
Definitely, bionic hearing. 

The Solar Homestead team is proud to feature Janelle Wienke as the decathlete of the week due to her outstanding involvement with planning the Boone Green Drinks event. Janelle coordinated with local businesses and helped organize donations to support the night's activities. 

A big thank you also goes out to: Art of Oil, Lowe's Foods, Harris Teeter, Panera, Bald Guy Brew, Pepper's Restaurant, Stick Boy Bakery, Ingles, and Mountain Lumber for their contributions to the evening's event! 

Thanks to everyone that attended! 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Senators Support Decathlete's Movement

The effort to return the Solar Decathlon to the National Mall continues to move forward. Twelve U.S. Senators, including NC Senator Kay Hagan, have shown their support of the movement by signing a letter asking the Secretaries of the Interior and Energy to reinstate the competition on the National Mall.
We would like to thank our Senators for supporting the competition and standing behind the decathletes. In order to support the National Mall as the location of the competition, please consider signing the petition and sending letters to Congress! 

Sign the Petition! 
View the Senator's Letter!