Photo by Stefano Paltera/U.S. Department of Energy

Heads up green building fans – Inhabitat is reporting live from Irvine, California, where student teams from across the States and around the world are putting the final touches on 19 stunning ultra-efficient homes for the Solar Decathlon 2013! This annual competition challenges the best and brightest young architects and builders to construct the world’s most efficient solar-powered homes – and they’re pulling out every trick in the green building book to save energy and push utility bills down below zero. The competition officially begins on Thursday, October 3rd but we’re bringing you a sneak peek today and tomorrow – so stay tuned for photos and breaking news straight from the event!

+ Solar Decathlon 2013

+ Solar Decathlon Coverage on Inhabitat