About BeauSoleil Home
BeauSoleil, which means "sunshine" in Cajun French, is the name of the solar house designed and built by the team from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, first-time competitors in the Solar Decathlon.
The house is a hybrid structure in every sense. With a focus on the culture and lifestyle of south Louisiana, BeauSoleil combines traditional, local design concepts with the latest innovations in energy efficiency and solar technology.
After the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2009, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette's BeauSoleil returned to campus, where it will remain.
"We put it here on campus so that students can experience it over the next several years and learn from it," says Dr. Geoff Gjertson, the 2009 team's faculty leader.
On March 25, 2010, a dedication ceremony officially marked BeauSoleil's permanent location next to Fletcher Hall, where the art and architecture program is based.
At Solar Decathlon 2009, BeauSoleil won the People's Choice Award. This accolade proved that the University of Louisiana at Lafayette succeeded in creating a solar-powered house that people wanted to call home.
Much of BeauSoleil's appeal stemmed from its local flavor. The students made sure to incorporate space for Acadian cultural traditions such as cooking, entertaining, and socializing into their design. The result was a maison (house) with universal appeal.
At some point, BeauSoleil may be used as a headquarters for sustainability on campus. This would require a graduate student to operate the house on a daily basis and open it for tours as needed. Such a future looks promising based on recent activity in the house. For example:
- Tour times are posted on the home and are subject to change. Tours will only be offered on a limited basis during the summer and other university breaks/holodays.
- Faculty members and students have been recording livability in a log while they enjoy weekend stays in BeauSoleil.
- The house has been the subject of multiple student thesis reviews and seminars. For example, new engineering students are learning about the solar panels and new architecture students are making modifications and additions to the design.
For additional BeauSoleil Home information and other questions, contact Geoff Gjertson at email@example.com or call 337-482-5175.