Leading up to the 2013 U.S. Solar Decathlon in Irvine, Calif., Ecobuildingpulse.com is keeping tabs on the progress of several teams. In a regular blog series, the teams will shed light on the experience of putting together their submissions for this year’s Solar Decathlon. The teams will go up against 18 other teams from Oct. 3–13., to see which one designed the best solar-powered house. This week's blog entry is from Team Las Vegas.

Team Las Vegas is a group of interdisciplinary students at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) working on the design and construction of their solar-powered prototype home, DesertSol. Team Las Vegas is made up of a group of about 60 students from various academic disciplines such as architecture, engineering and communications as well as some faculty members that assist in advising the students. UNLV was chosen as one of the 20 schools that will be competing in the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2013 in Irvine, Calif., in October this year. Universities from all around the world apply to participate in this competition. The Department of Energy, through its National Renewable Energy Laboratory selects the 20 teams that will be competing.

DesertSol, Team Las Vegas's entry into the Solar Decathlon will be assembled at UNLV's Paradise Campus and then transported to Irvine for the competition. Afterward, the home will have a permanent location at the Springs Preserve where it will serve as an exhibit for sustainable living in the desert. The students will begin construction on the home in the next couple weeks. Between now and the competition in October, the students will not only be constructing the home, but also attending events to continue to build the community's interest and support in the project. A huge part of this competition is raising the money to support the costs of the construction, transportation and various other necessities. The project cannot be completed without continued support from the community. We look forward to updating you on our success and the status of our project. To learn more about our project in between blog posts, visit solardecathlon.unlv.edu.

Keep visiting ecobuildingpulse.com for updates on the progress of the teams competing in the 2013 U.S. Solar Decathlon.

Team UNLV has put together an animation of the DesertSol House: