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What is a passive house and how is the architecture designed?

There are many reasons to build a passive house. The most important are related to the cost advantages you enjoy by building a passive house. The architecture of a passive house is designed so that the basic needs of the home owner, with respect to energy supply, are autonomously controlled. As the term "passive" implies, regulating the energy balance requires no action on your part. This capability stems from the architecture of the house. Roughly 8,000 people in Germany have meanwhile taken advantage of this architecture to build a passive house. But how does a passive house function and what is the respective architecture basically made of? The architecture is typically designed so that the outer shell of the passive house is insulated to keep the heat from escaping outside.

The passive house runs on its own

When building a passive house, a ventilation system acts to additional recover 80 percent of the heat. The roof of a passive house is designed to capture additional heat and store it until the room temperature sinks enough so that it must be released. Related studies have shown that a passive house constantly maintains an indoor temperature of more than 20°C at an outside temperature of -14°C. A passive house provides the freedom to individualize the architecture. The owner can decide whether to build the house out of concrete/brick, wood or a combination. The architecture always depends on the architect and the individual plan. However, there are several factors to consider when building a passive house.

The characteristics of a passive house thanks to its architecture

Passive houses exhibit specific characteristics that are tied to the architecture. The external building components must be extremely well insulated in addition to carefully constructing the corners, edges, joints and other cross sections. This would otherwise lead to excessive heat loss and failure of the architecture to fulfill the desired requirements. By taking these factors into account and using the right approach to building a passive house, one can expect a minimal heat loss of only .15 watts per square meter of external surface area. If you are building a house, the architecture should be designed to maximize the energy gain through the solar cells. For this reason, the solar cells on the roof of the passive house must have a southerly orientation.

To build a passive house, it should be designed such that the respective solar collectors and heat pumps supply power to the hot water system. When building a passive house and using the appropriate architecture, you can expect to significantly lower your operating costs.

Lower the operating costs

The architecture is what makes it possible for you to build a passive house and to have a complete energy system that runs on its own. While more and more people are dreaming of building a house, it always involves high costs. With the right architecture, you can build a passive house assuming that you will benefit from significantly lower monthly operating costs. This approach allows you to build to a house that runs completely on its own thanks to the corresponding high-quality architecture . Because the architecture is so well thought-out, you can build this house under the assumption that the heating balance will regulate itself. For this reason, you can assume that building a house is a worthwhile effort.

Architecture and Construction

Here you can discover new and innovative developments from the world of building design and construction.

innovations-report offers reports and articles on a variety of topics such as building optimization, modern construction materials, energy-efficient construction, natural insulation materials and passive buildings.

Latest News:

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Perspectives on Architecture: Global Responses

The University of Surrey and The Guildford Society recently (Tuesday, June 12) hosted the inaugural Annual Architecture Lecture.
The lecture was given by Christopher Nash, Managing Director of Grimshaw, who spoke on the theme of ‘Perspectives on Architecture: Global Responses’.

Christopher Nash is currently Director in charge of Stansted Airport Generation 2 Masterplan, Bournemouth Winter Gardens, and perhaps most interestingly the Cutty Sark conservation project. He has also been involved in the design and construction of many of the buildings on the University of Surrey campus. In addition to his active involvement in projects, he is also responsible for the strategic planning of Grimshaw business worldwide.... 15.06.2007 | nachricht Read more

The yearning to feel your gut drop­-the roller coaster as a machine, an economic system, and an experience

Riding a roller coaster is a first-class ego trip, an adrenalin kick that takes the rider on a trip, albeit only back to the starting point. Helena Csarmann at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm has studied how an apparently insignificant experience can constitute the foundation for a technologically advanced and profitable industry.
The yearning to feel your gut drop­-the roller coaster as a machine, an economic system, and an experience

In 2007 there are more than 2,000 roller coasters in... 05.06.2007 | nachricht Read more

Handheld device 'sees' damage in concrete bridges, piers

Aging structures can be inspected immediately, onsite
Engineers at MIT have developed a new technique for detecting damage in concrete bridges and piers that could increase the safety of aging infrastructure by... 24.05.2007 | nachricht Read more

Bridges Will Rock -- Safely -- with New Quake Design

Bridges that "dance" during earthquakes could be the safest and least expensive to build, retrofit and repair, according to earthquake engineers at the University at Buffalo and MCEER.
The researchers recently developed and successfully tested the first seismic design methodology for bridge towers that respond to ground motions by literally... 14.05.2007 | nachricht Read more

How to protect European buildings of historical interest from seismic events

The University of Liege, through the department Structures, Geology, Environnement & Construction (ArGEnCo), is the partner of European network PROHITECH (Earthquake Protection of Historical Buildings by Reversible Mixed Technologies) registered within the 6th R&D Framework Research Programme of the European Commission.
Network PROHITECH will be due in Liege, April 26 and 27, its penultimate meeting, gathering the representatives of the 16 universities partners, coming from 12... 23.04.2007 | nachricht Read more

Scientists to build 'self-healing' house for earthquake protection

To build an intelligent high-tech villa that can resist earthquakes by 'self-healing' cracks in its own walls and monitoring vibrations through sensors is the goal of the new EU funded project Intelligent Safe and Secure Buildings (ISSB).
The project will develop special walls with 'self-healing' properties made of nano polymer particles which turn into a liquid when squeezed under pressure. The... 05.04.2007 | nachricht Read more

‘Self-healing’ house in Greece will dare to defy nature

A high-tech villa designed to resist earthquakes by ‘self-healing’ cracks in its own walls and monitoring vibrations through an intelligent sensor network will be built on a Greek mountainside.
The University of Leeds’ NanoManufacturing Institute (NMI) will play a crucial role in the £9.5 million European Union-funded project by developing special... 03.04.2007 | nachricht Read more

New homes rise from rubbish

Imagine if you could turn old rubbish into new houses.
That’s exactly what civil engineer Dr John Forth from the University of Leeds wants to achieve with the invention of a building block made almost entirely of... 03.04.2007 | nachricht Read more

Sustainable Student Village design competition launched

Bids are being sought from developers and architects for new student housing at the University of Bradford which will see a unique environmentally sustainable community built on its campus.
The University is seeking expressions of interest for the right to build and manage the University’s £22 million ‘Sustainable Student Village’. Bidders are... 16.11.2006 | nachricht Read more

Kent awarded £322k for study into the electro-magnetic architecture of buildings

Dr John Batchelor and Professor Ted Parker in the Department of Electronics, University of Kent, have received a grant of £322,910 from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to co-ordinate an investigation into the electro-magnetic architecture of buildings with the aim of better controlling indoor radio signal strengths.
Their research will ultimately improve wireless network access in offices and also security in prisons where the illicit use of mobile phones is widespread.

The project, which begins in January 2007, is in collaboration with the universities of Manchester (who received £228k) and Auckland (New Zealand), and the Police Information Technology Organisation which has pledged a further £30,000. This will bring the total funding for the project to £581,000 over three years.... 31.10.2006 | nachricht Read more
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: An ultrafast glimpse of the photochemistry of the atmosphere

Researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have explored the initial consequences of the interaction of light with molecules on the surface of nanoscopic aerosols.

The nanocosmos is constantly in motion. All natural processes are ultimately determined by the interplay between radiation and matter. Light strikes particles...

Im Focus: Shaping nanoparticles for improved quantum information technology

Particles that are mere nanometers in size are at the forefront of scientific research today. They come in many different shapes: rods, spheres, cubes, vesicles, S-shaped worms and even donut-like rings. What makes them worthy of scientific study is that, being so tiny, they exhibit quantum mechanical properties not possible with larger objects.

Researchers at the Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility located at DOE's Argonne National...

Im Focus: Novel Material for Shipbuilding

A new research project at the TH Mittelhessen focusses on the development of a novel light weight design concept for leisure boats and yachts. Professor Stephan Marzi from the THM Institute of Mechanics and Materials collaborates with Krake Catamarane, which is a shipyard located in Apolda, Thuringia.

The project is set up in an international cooperation with Professor Anders Biel from Karlstad University in Sweden and the Swedish company Lamera from...

Im Focus: Controlling superconducting regions within an exotic metal

Superconductivity has fascinated scientists for many years since it offers the potential to revolutionize current technologies. Materials only become superconductors - meaning that electrons can travel in them with no resistance - at very low temperatures. These days, this unique zero resistance superconductivity is commonly found in a number of technologies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Future technologies, however, will harness the total synchrony of electronic behavior in superconductors - a property called the phase. There is currently a...

Im Focus: How Do the Strongest Magnets in the Universe Form?

How do some neutron stars become the strongest magnets in the Universe? A German-British team of astrophysicists has found a possible answer to the question of how these so-called magnetars form. Researchers from Heidelberg, Garching, and Oxford used large computer simulations to demonstrate how the merger of two stars creates strong magnetic fields. If such stars explode in supernovae, magnetars could result.

How Do the Strongest Magnets in the Universe Form?

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