The University of Colorado team at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon in Washington DC is on a roller coaster of mini victories and defeats as the game heats up. This morning, the ride left people feeling uneasy, if not queasy. Yesterday, they took a mediocre 10th place when the results of the first of ten competitions – architecture – was announced. But in classic CU style, they had already snuck up to fifth place by the night’s end because of how they were scoring in contests continuosly measured throughout the week, like mileage on their electric car, energy balance, and appliance tests.
Then optimism faded at 10 a.m. this morning however, when the results of the communications competition were announced. CU came in a disappointing 18th out of 20, dropping their overall place to 8th. The news was a shock, as communications was the one category CU dominated in both the previous decathlons the school won.
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And as if the teams weren’t already obsessing over scores enough, the solar decathlon web page is now updating the rankings every 15 minutes. Keep an eye on CU’s attempt to defend their title and pull off a 3-peat at www.solardecathlon.org, and look for the story coming soon. -- Jessica Centers