To power a 996-sf home, students from Sacramento State University equipped their prototype home for the Solar Decathlon with photovoltaic skylights.
These windows not only let a lot of natural light in, they also generate energy. ““The Reflect Home’s design is focused on the resident, with the intention of making the house as functional, livable, and comfortable as possible,” says the team. “The Sacramento State team believes net-zero design will achieve widespread application only when homebuyers realize that sustainability can be achieved without sacrificing accommodations.”
The simple structure was inspired by mid-century ranch homes with raised ceilings and an open plan, increasing the sense of spaciousness on a small footprint.
Inhabitat reports that each room is individually warmed and cooled by an efficient air-to-water heat pump with a ductless mini-split HVAC system.