02.06.2010 – Dominick R. Pilla Associates is providing structural engineering design services for the City College of New York’s entry in the US Department of Energy 2011 Solar Decathlon competition. During the next 14 months, Dominick R. Pilla Associates will work with City College students from The Spitzer School of Architecture and the Grove School of Engineering to complete their prototype, dubbed the Solar Roofpod, a 1,000 square foot structure specifically designed for sitting atop urban commercial or residential roofs. Dominick R. Pilla Associates developed the concept for a structural system for the CCNY prototype. The modular, contemporary design solution uses lightweight, highly efficient and sustainable materials. A “building-block” assembly will enable each pod to be transported to a building’s roof via staircase or elevator. The Solar Roof Pod incorporates technologies such as photovoltaic cells for lighting and appliances and solar thermal collectors to supply hot water and power air conditioning systems. Myriad sensors and controls will minimize the use of energy and communicate with users. Designed with existing urban structures in mind, the Solar Roofpod will take advantage of the rooftops of buildings in New York and other large cities, which are generally underutilized, but can provide beneficial access to solar radiation, wind, water and roof-top greenery. As an add-on to these rooftops, the Roof Pod would enable urban dwellers to experience what it is like to live more sustainably. “The prototype facility, if replicated, could have tremendous implications for PlaNYC,” says Hillary Brown, an advising professor from the Spitzer School of Architecture. PlaNYC is New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s initiative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2017.