Penn State Launches 2017-18 Race to Zero Effort

Students gather around a screen and one student leader who is describing the competition details.Student leaders describe the Race to Zero competition effort to prospective teammates.
Students gather around a screen and one student leader who is describing the competition details.

Student leaders describe the Race to Zero competition effort to prospective teammates.

The 2018 Race to Zero competition has begun at Penn State! The 2018 team leaders, Thomas Hanna (Mechanical Engineering, Senior), Sean Copeland (Energy Engineering, Junior), and Corey Crews-Williams (Energy Engineering, Junior), held an open house at the Hamer Center for Community Design on Thursday, August 31. During the event, students from across the University, freshman to seniors, came to learn more about energy-efficient residential design and research happening at Penn State and to learn about the competition and see past examples of successful entries by the Penn State team.

The Race to Zero competition is an annual student design competition hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy. Each year, student teams from across the world must research, design, and document a market-rate, zero-energy ready home (it must produce as much energy as it uses). Select teams are invited to present their designs in Denver, Colorado. Penn State has competed each year of the five year old competition – winning several awards! The competition is meant to inspire the next generation of building professionals to design and build more sustainable and resilient homes.

This year, the Penn State team is partnering with S&A Homes, a local production builder that constructs approximately 750-1000 homes a year in the central Pennsylvania region. If you would like to learn more about the competition or join the team, please contact Thomas Hanna (tah5360@psu.edu). Anyone may join the team – no experience in architecture, engineering, or building is necessary!

Students gather around a table and look at past competition documents.

Student review documents from previous competitions.

Another student presents Race to Zero competition posters to prospective teammates.

Another student leader presents Race to Zero competition materials.

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