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Learning Laboratory - Educational Ecohome - Bozeman, MT

Posted by Matt Power

Dec 1, 2013 12:31:00 PM

2013 Green Home of the Year Awards
Educational Ecohome - Bozeman, Mont.

This unusual project home in Montana is being monitored to test various energy-saving strategies.

DUBBED THE REHAU® Montana ecosmart house, this project earned a HERS rating of 33—an essential feature for a 6,786-square-foot floorplan hoping to be taken seriously as a “green” project. The ecohome is being evaluated and studied by the Montana State University Creative Research Lab

(MSU CRLab).

The building envelope is built of both insulated concrete forms (ICFs) and structural insulated panels

(SIPs). The house features geothermal heat exchange and radiant cooling panels—along with solar thermal. For research purposes “the house design includes overlapping, interactive technologies [to monitor and in some cases, adjust] heating and cooling, fresh air intake and ventilation, insulation and the building envelope.”

An Internet-accessible HVAC-control system prioritizes based on likely performance, “choosing the greenest available energy first.” The radiant system and solar panels also extend to snow and ice melting.

In 2014, the homeowners will move in. Data collection, comparison and analysis will continue for several months, in order to verify conclusions reached during the research phase.



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Topics: Geothermal Heating and Cooling, SIPs, ICFs, solar, 2013 Green Home of the Year Awards

The Right Conditioning

Posted by Matt Power

Dec 1, 2013 10:45:00 AM

2013 Green Home of the Year Awards
Best Behind the Walls - Chicago, IL

The Chicago area's first passive solar house eschews a traditional HVAC system.

INSTEAD OF A traditional HVAC system, two wall-mount, mini-split heat pumps—one on each floor—condition this airy modern home. The Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) mixes and distributes the air “like a Vitamix for air,” says builder Brandon Weiss.

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Topics: Super-insulated Envelope, bathroom, Indoor Air Quality, ICFs, 3500 to 4900 square feet, kitchen, Built-In Furniture, passive solar, HERS, Renewable Flooring, Low Flow Faucets, Illinois, PHIUS+ Passivhaus, natural daylighting, Passive design, 2013 Green Home of the Year Awards

Triple Feature - Best Infill Project - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Posted by Matt Power

Dec 1, 2012 3:45:00 PM

ON A QUIET street in Edmonton, Alberta, three Canadian homes are testing the limits of sustainable technology. In each case, the building envelope took precedence.

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Topics: ICFs, 1500 square feet or less, solar, passive solar, energy efficient windows, rainwater harvesting, 2012 Green Home of the Year Awards

Texas Off-Grid House Requires no Air Conditioning

Posted by Cati O'Keefe

Aug 27, 2012 9:18:00 AM

Photography by Jud Haggard Photography

It’s not the usual request you’d get from a home buyer: “Design me a building that doesn’t use the grid for power, water, or wastewater handling.” But that’s just what Teresa Fransik of Sierra was tasked with when she agreed to work with a couple who didn’t want to see an electric pole for as far as the eye could see.

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Topics: PV, 1600 to 2500 square feet, ICFs, rainwater harvesting, Texas, offgrid

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