Want to build solar homes that cost less than $100,000 and have a monthly energy bill of less than $25? Find out how the Building America program is making solar houses more affordable.
Jeff Christian, director of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Buildings Technology Center, on the porch of a Tennessee solar test home that averages total energy bills of just $25 a month.
Photo courtesy Allan B. Hunt
Modular homes in Atlantic City, N.J., that are being tested as part of the Zero Energy Homes program.
Photo courtesy Martin Photography
Bethel Drive in Lenoir City, Tenn., where four solar homes are paving the way for energy-independent living.
Photo courtesy Allen B. Hunt
This chart shows the kind of detailed monitoring conducted on net-zero-energy test homes.
Courtesy NAHB Research Center 2004
To find out exactly how well each technology they incorporate functions, the houses are equipped with dozens of sensors that monitor electricity consumption, temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide and hot-water usage.
Photo courtesy MOTHER EARTH NEWS editors
Cotton Duncan and Becky Clark, show off their lowest ever monthly energy bill: $11.90