As some of our customers invest in Solar many ask about other home projects they could do to become more green. A great resource we tell them about is to check out the U.S Department of Energy Solar Decathlon. Checking out the web page or even attending a solar decathlon event will yield many innovative ideas that people can pick up on. The solar decathlon is actually a competition that is held between Universities to design and build solar powered homes. It is a competition that started in the United States back in 20002 but now many other competitions around the world are being hosted as well. That means many different cultural ideas come together to build a great foundation of knowledge to be shared in regards to green building and solar with examples of so many types of scenarios and specialized needs. Different Cities have taken part in hosting the event so pay attention because one may be hosted at a city near you soon. They are free for the public and you can tour the homes with guided tours by the students themselves.
The solar decathlon is held every two years because this gives students time to truly come up with amazing home designs that are all with a grand focus of being solar powered. All the homes get judged on a variety of 10 contests and at one location. The first one was held in Washington DC and the others have been held in Orange County, California and Denver, Colorado. The students design and then build the home to be set up for a month of tours. Judging happens between public tour days. All of these past homes are cataloged on the U.S department of energy's website and most of the teams have websites up and running that highlight the individual home entry as well. Once competition is over many of the homes have been used as visitor centers around the country or to even house veterans. They are meant to be a learning tool for the public but to also teach students priceless lessons of green building and solar energy.
Many aspects of the home get judged on but every thing adds up to the best overall score to determine the winner. The contests can range from different aspects but the main ones are smart energy use, market potential, innovation, energy efficient heating and cooling systems, occupant health and comfort, cost effective architectural and engineering design, and even communications. A video walk thru has been created for each home that the public can see as well as plenty of photo albums. Some of the homes may seem pretty spectacular in regards to architecture design but don't let that intimidate you. Many processes of the house that include automation systems and water retention ideas could rub of on you for your own home designs.
Here are a few photos listed below that are from the 2017 Solar Decathlon that was held in Denver, Colorado. Our very own team member took the photos and toured all the homes looking for ideas that we can further pass to our friends.
Source: US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
Distracted Driver Awareness!!
Ring Ring Ring…….. Stop. Do Not answer that text message while driving!!! Pull over to a safe place and then respond!! All it takes is one distraction to steal your reaction!!
As the Missouri Solar Solutions team drives all over the Midwest for Solar Jobs we see a lot of people texting as they drive. Distracted driving is a constant threat that we have all been guilty of and it happens every day. Please be aware of others around you including watching out for motorcycle drivers. Place the phone in the back seat so that you are not tempted to reach for it. Heck, even power that phone off!! Pull over somewhere to scroll the internet or text when needed. Adjust that GPS before you even start the car. If anything be proactive and just get a headset to talk through verse holding the phone to your head.
A group of girls from the service organization Lambda Sigma Pi decided to make a float for the 2019 Saint Pats Parade in Rolla, Missouri and we were proud sponsors. The big message of the float was that driver awareness in general needs to happen. The young women and friends put driver safety pledges on all sorts of trinkets and placed messages on stuffed animals too. They then threw all the goodies to the crowd. The women yelled into a bull horn the very important driver safety message of putting the phone down and driving. They made lots of posters to place all over the float as well. Good job!!! Keep spreading that word of driver safety!!
Here are some facts about distracted driving. Texting while driving is 6 times more likely to cause a crash than driving while intoxicated. An average text message read on the road takes 5 seconds. At 55mph, that would be like driving the the length of a football field with your eyes closed. A lot can happen in those 5 seconds!!! A crash typically happens 3 seconds after a driver has been distracted. In the year 2015, 3,477 people perished and 391,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted driving. This high number of crashes has to change.
Please heed the warnings and take initiative to change bad habits. Don't Text and Drive!!
Sources: United States department of Transportation
When you see the Missouri Solar Solutions crew out and about in town don't feel shy to step up and stop by for a chat. Their is nothing we love more than really educating the public about Solar. The most exciting part is listening to your dreams and coming up with ways to personalize your system to meet that goal. Every one has different needs in relation to solar and that equates to very diverse projects. With all the increase in expenses, solar energy can help protect against utility rate hikes and thus helps to keep more money in your pocket. The midwest is a great place for solar.
When you stop by our booth don't rush off too quick because we have corn hole games to play and trinkets to pass out. Can you see a corn hole game sitting on the ground in the background of the picture? Can you spot Paul in the picture too? He is peeking around the sign!!!
We are coming to a fair, market, or exhibition near you!!! We are always looking for more places to make an appearance as well so if you had an event, fundraiser or show case coming up we would love to set up a booth. Just reach out to us. Booth's are a great way to provide information, hang out in the community, answer questions, swap stories and make dreams realities!!!
Sunny and Tasty.
Activates craving for sun...
Solar Sugar Rush!!!
Top 10 reasons why Puppy Power and Solar Power rule!!!
Puppy power and Solar power!!
Here is a top 10 list that truly illustrates how much solar energy can truly benefit the crazy fur ball in the house as well as the owners!!! Please enjoy the puppy photos as well. No pup was injured in the photo shoot. Many hugs and kisses were given and plenty of cute outtakes!!
10. A great way to power that automatic dog door.
9. Power the treat dispenser.
8. Make that automatic tennis ball machine run.
7. Make the radio play all day so the pup has background noise and does not get lonely while your at work.
6. Make the radio play all day so the pup has background noise and does not get lonely while your at work.
5. Electric to power that automatic window shade that will rise so puppy can look for the mail man!!
4. Power up that vacuum cleaner so puppy has something to bark at in the house.
3. Wash machine needs solar energy to clean dog outfits and blankets.
2. Lights to illuminate the back yard that will help the pup chase rabbits at night.
1. And the Number One reason Why Puppy Power and Solar Power rule is you need electricity to power up that 50 inch big screen TV to watch the pup's Favorite dog show competition.
Here is some information on how we clean panels. No endorsement deals come from the products we use. We are just sharing some tips on how we keep them clean. Thankfully we live in the Midwest and we get some good rain that helps to clean the dust off of the panels.
It’s advised to clean them once every couple of years or so. You can always clean them more often if you choose. Cleaning them off will help the production of energy a little bit. We use a soft cloth and some Simply Green cleaner. Some soft dish soap can be used as well. We don’t like to use anything harsh or antibacterial because that is not needed. We mix it with water and then wash away. Use a soft cloth to dry or let air dry. It’s as simple as that. We get up on the roof to clean but don’t advise you to do that unless you take proper safety precautions. You can do it from the ground by attaching a cloth to a sponge that’s attached to a long pole. If you would like us to come clean your panels don’t be afraid to give us a call and we can help you out.
Fun Time for Sun Time!!
A very cute Comic strip has been created for Missouri Solar Solutions. Joseph Tribble is the creator and super fan of all things solar!! Thanks so much for being so creative!!! We all need a little more art in our lives besides utilizing that powerful sun!!! Hope you all enjoy!!