UH students to compete in international solar decathlon in Washington D.C.

Students from across the UH System to build Hale Pilihonua

University of Hawaiʻi
Billie K. Takaki Lueder, 808-778-8589
Honolulu Community College
Elyse Peterson, (808) 927-8330
Posted: Apr 4, 2011

A team of students from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, Honolulu Community College and Kapi‘olani Community College, are joining 19 other colleges and universities from around the world in the 2011 U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon. This is a U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored competition focused on building net-zero energy homes to be displayed at the National Mall in Washington D.C. this September.
The students, who call themselves Team Hawaiʻi, were selected for participation in the Washington D.C. event from amongst 100 universities from around the world. Their entry, Hale Pilihonua, is an innovative, singularly designed home made of composite and renewable material and powered by photovoltaic panels surrounding its circular walls.
Team Hawaiʻi has raised close to $500,000 and is looking to raise another $800,000, mostly in in-kind donations of materials, technical expertise and other resources. This is the first time students from so many different disciplines from the UH System are collaborating on a project.
“With the finish line in sight, Team Hawaiʻi is in need of contributions from local businesses and the community to help complete the project and to make the trip to Washington, D.C. possible,” said UH Mānoa College of Engineering Dean Peter E. Crouch.
Tonight, Monday, April 4, industry and union leaders are invited to learn more about Hale Pilihonua at a fundraising event at Honolulu Community College’s Norman W. H. Loui Conference Center, 4:30 to 7 p.m.
Honolulu CC students will build Hale Pilihonua, based on designs by students from the UH College of Engineering and College of Architecture. Students from the UH Mānoa Shidler College of Business are providing marketing and fundraising services.
“At the April 4 event we will have a ‘giving’ tree with items that companies can choose to donate, for example $3,000 worth of nuts and bolts or bamboo flooring,” said Elyse Petersen, Team Hawai‘i’s communications officer. “In addition, sponsor-a-student packages will be available. We expect to send 40 students to D.C.”
In the upcoming months Team Hawai‘i will be finalizing design construction of the house, which will then be shipped and reconstructed in Washington D.C.
Team Hawaii’s innovative house can be seen on their website www.solar.hawaii.edu. You can also follow their journey at www.twitter.com/teamHawaii2011 and www.facebook.com/teamHawaii2011.
You can make a gift online at http://www.uhfoundation.org/SolarDecathalon