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Maryland Utility to Purchase Solar Contest Winning House

WaterShed (University of Maryland)

WaterShed (University of Maryland)

The electric utility company Pepco says it will purchase the WaterShed house that won the 2011 Solar Decathlon contest in October. The house was built by faculty and students at the University of Maryland in College Park, its current location.

The 2011 Solar Decathlon pitted 20 teams representing institutions in the U.S., Canada, Europe, and Asia/Pacific region. The Maryland entry combined solar energy capture with recycling and reuse of storm water. The WaterShed structure includes a green roof to retain storm water, as well as constructed wetlands that filter storm water for reuse. It also has a patent-pending indoor waterfall that provides humidity control.

Pepco, which serves 778,000 residents in the District of Columbia and suburban Maryland, plans to open WaterShed to the public at one of its Montgomery County facilities, although the company has not yet made a final site selection. The house, says Pepco, will be used for conferences, educational presentations, and occasional public tours. It will also serve Pepco as an energy testing facility. Under the agreement, Pepco will cover WaterShed’s outstanding project costs and will pay for its transport and reassembly. The sale price was not disclosed.

The Maryland team had 200 student and faculty participants from the university’s architecture, planning, engineering, agriculture, computer science, and natural science departments. The school credits Maryland businesses and professional groups that provided financial and mentoring support.

The following video provides a tour of WaterShed.


Read more: Solar Panels Resembling Ivy to be Installed at University

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