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Solar Decathlon: A sneak peek at the houses

By: Matt Hickman on Sept. 9, 2011, 7:07 a.m.
The City College of New York, Solar Roofpod

Photo: DOE

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City College of New York, Solar Roofpod

The first 2011 Solar Decathlon home to catch our attention back in September 2010, Team New York's stunningly forward-thinking Solar Roofpod is a sustainable living solution for vertical, densely populated environments like New York City where space is at a premium. In other words, it's a home — just think of it as a solar-powered "penthouse with a purpose" in the sky — to be assembled on the rooftop of an existing mid-rise building. That said, this one-story modular dwelling comprised of 64 wood-framed "building blocks" will obviously not be installed atop a "host building" (read: skyscraper) during this month's solar home building showdown in D.C., so visitors will have to use a bit of old-fashioned imagination about the Solar Roofpod's intended location (bonus points for feigning acrophobia).