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ReStart4Smart: the students from Sapienza University competing in Dubai to build the house of the future

Nastro Azzurro Crowd 5
All or nothing
Goal: 10,000€


ReStart4Smart: the students from Sapienza University competing in Dubai to build the house of the future

Nastro Azzurro Crowd 5
All or nothing
Goal: 10,000€

Who we are

We are a multidisciplinary university team composed of 50 students from the three Faculties of Architecture, Engineering and Communication of Sapienza University of Rome.

We are participating for the first time, representing Italy, with other 21 Athenaeums from 16 different countries in the world, to the international competition Solar Decathlon, the university Olympics of sustainable architecture that, in 2018, will be hosted in Dubai, in the Middle East.

Our goal is to design and build, by October 2018, the best full-scale prototype of the house of the future: green, smart and completely powered by solar energy.

Our Smart Solar House, entirely in wood, will be built in Pomezia, near Rome, to be then transported to Dubai in the location of the competition where, from October to November 2018, furnished and perfectly functioning, it will be shown to the public with the other participating houses to be evaluated by an international jury.

In order to achieve our goal we are constantly committed, lead by our teachers, in a rigorous training in education, research, design and experimentation. Our approach is based on teamwork, in order to stimulate innovation and a comprehensive and creative way of thinking.

Our challenge

The Solar Decathlon is a bi-yearly international competition in architecture, design and engineering reserved to Universities, with the aim to develop the innovation and transmission of knowledge and research in the field of renewable energies and sustainable architecture.

Starting from its first edition in 2002, the competition has registered the participation of over 140 Athenaeums from all over the world, meeting in the United States, South America, Europe, China and now, for the first time, in the Middle East.

The challenge thrown to the worldwide Universities is to design and build – in an academic context, for a period of two years – a house prototype with the sun as the only energy source, and to test its efficiency and environmental quality for a period of a month in a specifically dedicated site.

The projects are entirely self-financed and the different Teams have the task to find the necessary resources through the involvement of sponsors and supporters willing to support the excellence and ingenuity of young talents and to promote energy efficiency, renewable sources and a sustainable and innovative architecture.

Once realized, the prototypes of the “Solar houses”, fully functioning, will be open to the public, and evaluated by an international jury on the basis of 10 contests (from which the name Solar Decathlon): architecture, constructive system, energy management, energy efficiency, internal comfort, house functioning, electric mobility, environmental mobility, environmental sustainability, communication and technological innovation.

The Solar Decathlon offers students a unique opportunity to test their own innovation capacities, allowing to apply many theoretical concepts on a practical case study in an international context.

Our mission

With our project “ReStart4Smart” we aim to face the new challenges of the contemporary society that require a different way of designing, building and managing the buildings in which we live, through a new approach to architecture that, starting form the traditions of the past, is able to exploit all the possibilities offered by a design respecting the environmental context and the use of renewable energies, sustainable technologies and highly innovative and low environmental impact constructive solutions.

The buildings in which we live are responsible for over 40% of energy consumption globally and over 30% of greenhouse gases emissions causing climate changes.

With our project ReStart4Smart , we aim to deeply improve the whole building process and to raise awareness in the public opinion about the energy efficiency and responsible use of energy in buildings, clearly demonstrating that high performance solar houses can be comfortable, attractive, affordable and smart.

Our house of the future

The name ReStart4Smart indicates literally the will to introduce a new approach to Making Architecture that, starting form the traditions of the past, is able to exploit all the possibilities offered by the use of renewable energy sources and highly innovative and low environmental impact design and constructive solutions to build a house that is actually Smart.

A zero energy house, built with ecological and recyclable materials, comfortable, safe and perfectly integrated with the climate and culture of its places.

In order to do that, we focus on 4 pillars: Design, Envelope, Systems and People.

Smart Design: Shape, orientation, openings and external spaces of the house will be optimized in order to favour solar gain, natural light and ventilation and to reduce energy demands to the minimum.

Smart Envelope: Thanks to the use of innovative materials and 3D Printing, the external envelope will be able to offer the maximum thermal comfort both during the summer and winter and the maximum acustic protection.

Smart Systems: Systems will be highly efficient, completely powered by renewable energy sources and connected to each other and to the external grid, in order to collect data and share information to reduce consumptions.

Smart People: Users will be able to interact with the house through the latest generation Internet of Things automated systems activated by simple actions or voice-commands, managing energy consumptions and comfort levels in a conscious way.

Our Solar House, around 100 square metres, will be built in Italy in Pomezia, near Rome, starting autumn 2017, once the design phase, which has begun last October 2016, is finished.

Completion of the works is planned for spring 2018 and from that moment it will be open to the public. In the months from June and August 2018, operative tests on energy consumption and internal comfort conditions will be conducted. 

On September 2018, the house will be transported to Dubai for the final challenge.

Educate future generations

Our Team is strongly committed to an intense activity of communication and dissemination in order to raise awareness among professionals and public authorities about the importance of a more sustainable architecture and to educate the public and future generations on the themes of sustainability, renewable energies and green building.

Our prototype will act as a permanent open laboratory for education and training, with the purpose of promoting the conscious use of energy and the integration of renewable energy sources in buildings.

Our goals will not be limited to Dubai, but we aim to continue our important research, development and innovation activity even after the competition, starting a virtuous process in our country through the construction of a project open to the active contribution either from insiders and the general public.

How the funds will be used

The funds that we will raise will be used to contribute to the construction of the prototype of the Solar House and to its transportation to Dubai in October 2018. 

In particular, your contribution will be devoted to the purchase of materials, furniture and devices for the Solar House and instruments to measure the performance and internal environmental comfort, as well as to the costs for transporting the prototype from Pomezia to Dubai.

Help us win our challenge!

Big challenges are the engine of innovation, and the Solar Decathlon represents a unique occasion for us students to get involved, make a difference and leave a positive sign in the world, by proposing solutions able to guarantee a better future to our generation and those to come.

The goals of our project are ambitious and are not limited to the context of the competition: we aim to change positively people’s life through a deep respect for the environment, a conscious use of sources and a constant growth in research and technology advancement.

To build the house of the future, transport it to the location of the competition and achieve our important goal, we need your support too: join Team Sapienza, and together, we will build a better future, a sustainable future, a smart future.

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Project created by

Team Sapienza SDME

We are a university multidisciplinary Team participating in the Solar Decathlon Middle East 2018 competition with the aim to design and build in two years, from October 2016 to October 2018, a full-scale prototype of a green, smart and 100% solar-powered home. With our project ReStart4Smart we aim to face the new challenges of the contemporary society that require a different way of designing, constructing, operating and improving the buildings we live in.

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