Stevens Institute of Technology, a private research university in Hoboken, N.J., won top honors at the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon 2015 on Saturday. The team's SURE House, inspired by the need for dwellings that can withstand the kind of storm surge, high winds and flooding associated with 2012's Superstorm Sandy, was judged to be the best of 14 solar-powered homes in the collegiate competition. Judges awarded points based on each home's affordability, attractiveness, comfort and net energy consumption.
“The Stevens design stacks up very favorably against many homes designed by seasoned architectural teams, and in fact outstrips the vast majority of U.S. houses when it comes to energy performance," wrote one of the judges, Ann Edminster, an international expert on green homes. "The love of community that drove this design inspired a highly effective collaboration, in turn giving rise to an exceptionally well-integrated final product that will benefit both the occupants and their larger community.”
Stevens took first place with an overall score of 960 out of a possible 1,000 points. The State University of New York at Buffalo took second place (941 points). Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, took third (910 points).