Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering (MSE)


Civil and Environmental Engineering

First Committee Member

Pramen P. Shrestha

Second Committee Member

Neil Opfer

Third Committee Member

David R. Shields

Fourth Committee Member

Nancy N. Menzel

Number of Pages



Energy consumption in residential homes has been a subject of research related to sustainability. Reduction in the consumption of energy is a goal of sustainable construction. The Department of Energy (DOE) started a Solar Decathlon competition in 2002 in which the students from different universities around the globe build an energy efficient and affordable home suitable for their climate and location. The main goal of this competition is to select the best home that is designed and built in a sustainable way. In this study, the home designed and constructed for participation in the competition by the students at University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) has been taken into consideration. This home has been designed for the desert climate. The main objectives of this study are to describe the design and construction process of this home, the energy efficient features used in the home, the cost associated with the construction of the home, and also the energy consumed by the home. In addition to this, the energy consumption data of this home collected during the competition period in Irvine, California was compared with 30 Energy Star and 30 non-Energy Star homes in Henderson, Nevada. The results showed that the zero energy home not only produced energy sufficient to run the entire home, but also proved to be more energy efficient than the Energy Star and non-Energy Star homes built in Henderson, Nevada by consuming 2% and 6% less energy respectively.


Architecture – Competitions; Construction; Dwellings – Design and construction; Dwellings – Energy conservation; Energy; Energy efficiency; Net zero energy home; Residential; Solar Decathlon; Sustainable architecture


Architectural Engineering | Architectural Technology | Civil Engineering | Environmental Design | Sustainability

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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