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Projects Updates for Illinois Solar Decathlon

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  1. 8/3 Meeting to discuss location at Hope Village

    Associated Project(s): 

    Illinois Solar Decathlon President Rachel Chen met with Marty Smith to discuss the possibility of having the current next solar decathlon home built at the hope village project. Marty discussed possibilities for a separated subdivision of homes. But the more likely option would be to construct a library or community building than a single family home. Either of these options would be more likely during the next building cycle for solar decathlon.

  2. Invitation to HCL and NCEB event on 05/25/22

    Associated Project(s): 

    Below is an email invitation to an event at the Hydrosystems Laboratory:

    Hello all,


    On behalf of Illinois Solar Decathlon, I would like to invite you to our event, Reimagining HSL and NCEB, where our Concept Team will be presenting their semester-long projects to UofI Facilities and Services. Feel free to invite other faculty as well. More details below.


    Title of the event: Reimagining HSL & NCEB

    Venue: Hydrosystems laboratory, Room 1017

    Time : Monday, 25th from 5:00 pm

    Everyone is invited.


    5:05 - 5:25 PM: Photovoltaics and Green Roof Team
    5:25 - 5: 45 PM: Building Automation Systems Team
    5:45- 6:05 PM: Sustainable Landscapes Team

    *15 mins for each team's presentation and 5 mins for Q&A*


    We hope to see you there!

    Attached Files: 
  3. Solar Decathlon Project Update

    Associated Project(s): 


    From: Majerus, Elizabeth

    Sent: Thursday, September 16, 2021 12:25 PM

    To: White, Morgan

    Cc: Gharpure, Prajakta Milind; Kovitz, Kyle Paige; Low, Khee; Davis, Peter ; Collins, Halie Jean; Kroencke, Janet Lynn

    Subject: Re: Following up with Solar Decathalon Design Team


    Hi Prajakta, Peter, Khee, and Kyle,

    I really loved the work you did on envisioning an energy efficient retorfit and addtion for Uni High's beautiful historic building. Uni will be moving forward in the next five years with a fundraising plan for an expansion and update of our building, and we'd love to be able to consult with some or all of you as we lay that groundwork. 

    Halie, we'd also love to have any current ISD students/staff involved, if there's interest. I'm also CCing our Director of Advancement, Janet Kroenke, who will be in the lead of the fundraising efforts that will make our future building update possible. 

    Please let me know if you'd like to be part of a conversation about drawing on the Uni High Solar Decathalon Design project for our future planning.

    Take care,





    Elizabeth Majerus, Ph.D. 


    University Laboratory High School

    Provost/VCAA Admin

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 


    From: White, Morgan

    Sent: Tuesday, August 10, 2021 10:00 AM

    To: Majerus, Elizabeth

    Cc: Gharpure, Prajakta Milind; Kovitz, Kyle Paige; Low, Khee; Davis, Peter; Collins, Halie Jean 

    Subject: RE: Following up with Solar Decathalon Design Team


    Hi Elizabeth!

    This is great to hear.  And congratulations on being named the Director.

    I’m copying all the students you named, and the current ISD lead, Halie Collins.  Please let me know if there is anything else I can help with!







    Associate Director of F&S for Sustainability


    Facilities & Services | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    1501 S Oak Street (MC-800) | Champaign, IL 61820


    From: Majerus, Elizabeth

    Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2021 12:06 PM

    To: White, Morgan 

    Subject: Following up with Solar Decathalon Design Team


    Hi Morgan,


    I'm interested in following up on the wonderful Solar Decathalon project that the student design team presented on in May 2020. This was something that I had hoped to do during the 2020-21 school year, but the pandemic really shifted my expectations and task list. 

    I wondered if you might have contact information for any of the students who worked on the Uni project. Prajakta Gharpure, Khee Kim Low, Peter Davis, Kyle Kovitz were the students who presented that day.

    We are hoping to stay in our present Uni building, and ideas like those that these students shared are an inspiration for what might be possible in terms of the greater space and updated infrastructure we'll need to sustain our school.

    Thanks for any help you can offer on this.


    Take care,


  4. Article: An Earth Month to Remember

    The Spring 2021 iSEE Quarterly Update (iQ) highlighted a diverse array of campus initiatives that made this year's Earth Month one to remember. Ranging from hosted events to sustainable energy, the article discusses the launch of the "TED Talk: Eco Edition" series, Solar Farm 2.0, community trash pickup, and more!

    Read the article in the attached files below. 

  5. Spring 2021: iSEE Quarterly Update (iQ)

    The Spring 2021 iSEE Quarterly Update (iQ) was released with the following message from Madhu Khanna, the Interim Director of iSEE:


    Dear Colleagues,

    Attached, please find the Spring 2021 “iQ” – the quarterly update from the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment (iSEE).

    It has remained a busy time here on our campus, as we bolstered our outstanding Congress and Critical Conversation events with the addition of two experts — activist Catherine Coleman Flowers and nuclear expert Denia Djokić — who are serving as Levenick iSEE virtual resident scholars.

    Thanks to the support of experts Eban Goodstein, Tami Craig Schilling, and Harriet Hentges, our new Environmental Leadership Program workshops for undergraduates were a rousing success.

    And we were so pleased to have a mix of virtual and in-person Earth Month events to engage students, faculty, and staff from across our campus!

    Please take a quick look at those updates and more in this six-page “iQ.” For more regular news, please sign up for our E-newsletter at

    Best wishes for the summer,


  6. Halie Collins is the Next President of Illinois Solar Decathalon

    Associated Project(s): 

    Halie Collins is the officially the next President of the Illinois Solar Decathlon (ISD) team! In her new position, she will be leading the efforts to form the next Build Team and Design Team. 

    The outgoing president, Shashikiran Duraisamy, shared this note of thanks with Morgan White at F&S: "The Illinois Solar Decathlon team is extremely grateful for all the support that you have provided in the last two years. Your support was extremely valuable for our success and to support and contribute towards University’s sustainability initiatives. We are so much grateful for the Facilities and Services’ decision to allow ISD to store our construction materials in the Physical Plant Services Building and the constant support that the Receiving team (Dave Boehm & Jim McGuire) provided us to access the materials with ease. This was a lifesaver for our project. I look forward to the continued relationship between Illinois Solar Decathlon and Facilities & Services."

  7. Adapthaus inauguration coming soon!

  8. Re-Home Wall Rehab and Siding

  9. Design Team results for Uni High

    Associated Project(s): 

    I would like to thank you for the wonderful opportunity. I would also like to thank everyone who attended and gave their encouraging and insightful inputs. It was a rewarding experience to present and get positive feedback. 

    Peter and I, would love to keep working and participating in this process since we are here on campus for another two years. It would be really nice if you would involve us. Excited about that!


    Also, I am attaching the PowerPoint presentation for reference and further use. 


    Thanks once again, and I hope everyone stays safe and healthy. 


    Warm regards,

    Prajakta Gharpure

  10. SSC funds Gable Home

    The Gable Home was designed and built by students to compete in the 2009 US Dept. of Energy's Solar Decathlon Competition. Following the competition, the house returned to campus and was located at the I Hotel until Spring 2017 at which point it had to be moved due to the expansion of the research park. Since then a team of students and faculty have been working on finding a new permanent location for the Gable Home. A suitable location was found at the Energy Farm on Race St. in Urbana. The house is a valuable educational tool for students from many units on campus to visit and experience occupying a space that is powered solely by the sun and uses passive and active systems to create desirable thermal comfort throughout the year. This SSC grant provides support for the installation costs to make Gable Home a permanent fixture at the Energy Farm, so it meets building codes.

  11. 2009 Gable House moved

    Associated Project(s): 

    Student Sustainability Committee and the School of Architecture worked with F&S to move the 2009 Solar Decathlon House from I Hotel grounds, where it was located for seven years. The house moved to the Energy Bioscience Research Farm on Race Street south of Windsor Road. The 695-square foot building, weighing more than 50,000 pounds, was designed by University of Illinois students and took second place in the U.S Department of Energy’s 2009 Solar Decathlon. Since then it has been used by various campus units, who study the design and construction of the building.

  12. SECS Re_home landscaping

    In 2011, students at faculty from the University of Illinois develop the Re_Home for the Solar Decathlon Competition. As a result of a new landscaping and beautification plan, the Re_Home has found a permanent place on campus. In maintaining a “sustainability ideology”, the landscaping plans for this project are geared toward sustainability with the use of native, low maintenance plants as well as vegetables, edible herbs, and fruit trees. The Re_Home is an exemplary embodiment of sustainability and its permanent home will serve as a showcase in sustainability education.

  13. Element House at the Energy Farm

    The 2007 Solar Decathlon house is coming home to Champaign Urbana to a permanent foundation at the University Energy Farm. Funds have been secured for its transportation, placement on a permanent foundation, utility hook ups, and inspection of current systems to ensure safe working order. Funding from the Student Sustainability Committee will defray the costs of upgrading the systems and bringing the house up to code. To meet these goals, the solar array will need to be redesigned and reconstructed; the electrical, lighting, and HVAC systems will need to be updated; and new monitoring equipment will need to be installed. Ultimately, the goal of this project is to have a fully functioning net negative energy residential model home. Student groups are assuming the responsibility for all design, construction, and monitoring tasks as they are able.

  14. F&S comment on solar house at Energy Farm

    Associated Project(s): 

    Collin has been involved in this project from the very beginning, so he should be involved in any further discussions on this project. I really want to ensure proper code compliance on this since it was not originally built nor inspected to verify adherence to the International Residential Code or the NEC. We are trying to renovate it to be considered to be a code-compliant single family residence. - Craig Grant

  15. Solar Decathlon 2011 Funding Agreement

    This proposal seeks to provide funding for student education centered around the University of Illinois’s participation in the 2011 US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon Competition. Each student team participating in this prestigious, international competition is required to build an entirely solar-powered 800 sq. foot house with innovative design features. This grant will provide funds for the development of new courses and enhancement of existing courses, provisioning of course materials and software, and the sponsorship of guest lecturers and consultants ($25,000), the employment of graduate students in coordinating roles for education and volunteer engagement activities ($15,000), and student travel associated with the competition ($10,000). The last UI entry in the Solar Decathlon competition engaged hundreds of students and was the highest-placed US finisher in the Competition; furthermore this participation will require the team to raise $700,000 at a time of severe campus budget constraints. Thus, the Student Sustainability Committee is in favor of funding this proposal in the amount of $50,000.