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Sustainable Power Systems


The Solar Decathlon is an intercollegiate competition that asks student-led teams to design and build carbon-free, energy efficient, and resilient houses. Net Zero 5280 (NZ5280) is competing in the 2023 build competition. The Sustainable Power Systems (SPS) Senior Design team designed the energy systems for the NZ5280 house. To meet the energy demands of the NZ5280 house and the competitions of the solar decathlon challenge the SPS team subdivided into several different categories relating to energy production: energy analysis, power generation, energy storage, smart-home efficiencies, household HVAC, and water heating.

From the energy analysis, the team was able to determine the amount of energy required to maintain the house at net-zero, giving a baseline for our power generation, energy storage, and energy efficiencies. The Sustainable Power Systems team used several design concepts to meet the net-zero objective. The battery implements an innovative and sustainable design using reusing second-life Nissan Leaf batteries. The HVAC systems will use a 2-ton ground source heat pump with a 300-foot borehole. The team has also utilized the waste heat from the ground source heat pump in tandem with a solar thermal collector to heat the domestic water which reduced the energy demand of the house. Lastly, the team also designed an 8-kW
rooftop photovoltaic system.

Team Members

  • Dahlia Byles

  • Kevin Greene

  • David Koehnke

  • Matthew Larivee

  • Andrew Zakhem

The Client

  • Net Zero 5280 (NZ5280)


Project Advisors:  Profs. Leslie Light and Tim Ohno

Donations Made by: Net Zero 5280 (NZ5280)


Video – Coming Soon!