Solar Decathlon Winners Share a Sunny Link to Success

Top-Ranking Teams Used SMA America Products in Development of High-End Solar Homes

GRASS VALLEY, Calif., Nov. 12, 2007—College students from across the globe recently demonstrated that all exceptional solar-powered homes have one thing in common: SMA America, Inc., the U.S. division of global solar technology giant SMA Technologie AG.


During the week of Oct. 12, nearly 20,000 visitors gathered on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. for the U.S. Department of Energy's 2007 Solar Decathlon, a competition in which 20 college and university teams compete to design and execute the most attractive, effective and energy-efficient solar-powered home.

Although each team's concept was unique, those that used SMA products dominated the competition. Six of the 20 contenders, including the first-, third- and fourth-place winners, utilized products from SMA. The top teams earned high marks in categories such as Energy Balance, Architecture and Engineering.

"Seeing our products featured in the Solar Decathlon's winning homes is extremely exciting," said Pierre-Pascal Urbon, SMA America, Inc. president. "SMA strives to create the most efficient and reliable solar products, and we are thrilled to be a part of an event that sheds a positive, educational light on the vast potential of solar power."

German Technische Universität Darmstadt took home the grand prize for a house whose architectural components, engineering and use of lighting best embodied the innovative direction in which the rapidly-growing solar industry is progressing. Recording a perfect score in the Energy Balance category, the team utilized six of SMA America's leading-edge products, including multiple Sunny Boy grid-tied inverters and the new Sunny Island 5048U, a powerful battery-based inverter suitable for both off-grid and backup applications.

Third- and fourth-place winners Santa Clara University and Penn State also used SMA America's Sunny Island and Sunny Boy products in their victorious designs. In addition, Penn State employed the Sunny Web Box, a remote monitoring and data storage device with a web-friendly interface.

About SMA America, Inc.
SMA America, Inc. is a proud part of the worldwide SMA family of companies, with divisions in nine countries on four continents, boasting over 1,300 employees, and continuous double-digit growth. SMA America supports installers and small businesses in the solar industry through marketing and training assistance. Since 2000, SMA America has shown unfaltering commitment to the continued development and implementation of leading-edge products, including some of the most efficient solar inverters available nationwide. Visit solarisfuture.com for more information.

About the Solar Decathlon
The U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon is an international competition that brings student teams from universities across the United States, Europe and Canada to compete in designing, building and operating highly energy-efficient, completely solar-powered houses. Contest rules require that each house generate enough energy from the sun to operate a household, a home-based business and related transportation needs.

Teams are judged in ten different categories, seven of which focus on energy efficiency; others include design and comfort of the house. The team with the most points - the most energy-efficient and innovative house - wins.

For more information, please visit http://www.solardecathlon.org.

# # #

Featured Product

LG Solar Unveils NeON R with Enhanced Aesthetics and Energy Savings

LG Solar Unveils NeON R with Enhanced Aesthetics and Energy Savings

The NeON R module features "Back Contact" cell technology delivering an entirely black panel that is aesthetically pleasing and energy efficient. The cell's seamless, surface blends perfectly into nearly all rooftop designs while the module's electrodes are positioned on the rear of the cell. Using LG's N-type cell structure, the panels produce 365W of energy, up to 7.3kWp, compared to 5.8kWp of the p-type cell. The module's new design minimizes LID, thereby delivering a longer lifespan and increased energy output.