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Only 3.5 days to go

Today was a beautiful day to work on the National Mall, with clear skies and a good temperature. Our team arrived on the mall early, enjoyed a breakfast from one of the DOE Sponsors and quickly got to work.

Our roofers were able to complete all of the standing-seam panels and our electricians began placing the solar panels on the roof. While they are not as far as they would have liked, progress is being made and we have high hopes for tomorrow. The panels are being attached to the roof with a clip that clamps onto the standing seam without any penetrations thereby minimizing the chance for water damage and allowing flexibility for changes in the future. The team chose a metal standing seam roof because its life span is much longer than a flat or asphalt roof thereby allowing the roof to outlast the solar panels. Otherwise, a homeowner is forced to remove all of the solar panels to replace the roof, an expensive and complicated process.

The team also worked to build most of the decking and ramps that surround the house. We used reclaimed wood from a grain silo that was being deconstructed on the west end of Champaign, Illinois - our local town. The salvagers were only taking boards longer than eight feet as that is the only economical way for them to run their business, so we designed our system to use only boards that are below 8', thereby allowing us to use wood that even the salvagers were going to throw away.

Our team also worked to touch up the paint on our house and begin working with the Department of Energy on passing our necessary inspections. It is important that the homes are built correctly and safely so there are no concerns about potential hazards during competition week. So far, we have passed foundations and are making great progress towards the rest.

Most of the team is sleeping now, preparing for another day. I will be joining them shortly. If you are interested, one of our students has posted photos from the mall to his flickr site. View Images Here

We should have more media online shortly. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any of the team members at any time.

Thanks again, Joe


Go Illini! The pictures look great. Keep the updates coming in. We wish you the best.


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