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June 24, 2017

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National Chiao Tung University team honored again at Solar Decathlon Europe

TAIPEI--A futuristic solar-powered house designed by a team from National Chiao Tung University (NCTU) won third place in the energy efficiency category Thursday at Solar Decathlon Europe (SDE) 2014, which is being held in Versailles, France.

The award for energy efficiency, one of 10 competition categories to be scored before an overall winner is declared, considers excellence in systems and house design while looking for reduction of energy consumption.

"This evaluation considers not only the active side of energy conservation, but also the jury pays special attention to each team's ability to save energy passively from the design standpoint," said Harrison Fraker, one of the judges at the competition.

NCTU's Orchid House tied for third in energy efficiency after winning the urban design, transportation and affordability category with a perfect score of 120, and it also finished fifth in the architecture category, and fourth in engineering and construction.

With the scores from eight of the 10 categories posted, the Orchid House was ranked 12th out of the 20 teams with an overall score of 602.77 in a tightly bunched field.

Only the scores for innovation and sustainability have yet to be posted.

The Orchid House has impressed the judges with a design concept that allows the house to function well and sustainably in humid climates such as Taiwan's as well as in dry climates.

It is seen as a structure that could ultimately serve as a prototype for social housing in Taiwan.

The Solar Decathlon is a competition that was launched by the U.S. Department of Energy in 2002 at the National Hall in Washington, D.C., and first held in Europe in Madrid in 2010.

It challenges collegiate teams to design, build, and operate solar-powered houses that are cost-efficient, energy-efficient and attractive.

The Chiao Tung University team, consisting of 30 students and 10 teachers, has received support from advanced technologies provided by Delta Electronics.

The Taiwanese company provided the team with its building energy management system and newly unveiled Battery Energy Storage Solution, which allows electricity stored in batteries to either be used by the household when there is no sunlight or fed into a power grid when there is a surplus.

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