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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.

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MIT duo see people-powered "Crowd Farm" Plan would harvest energy of human movement

Two graduate students at MIT's School of Architecture and Planning want to harvest the energy of human movement in urban settings, like commuters in a train station or fans at a concert.
The so-called "Crowd Farm," as envisioned by James Graham and Thaddeus Jusczyk, would turn the mechanical energy of people walking or jumping into a source of... 01.08.2007 | nachricht Read more

NJIT professor says certain home shapes and roofs hold up best in hurricane

Certain home shapes and roof types can better resist high winds and hurricanes, according to a researcher at New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).
Civil engineer Rima Taher, PhD, special lecturer in the New Jersey School of Architecture at NJIT, spent two years examining the findings of research centers... 20.06.2007 | nachricht Read more

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
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Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: How to induce magnetism in graphene

Graphene, a two-dimensional structure made of carbon, is a material with excellent mechanical, electronic and optical properties. However, it did not seem suitable for magnetic applications. Together with international partners, Empa researchers have now succeeded in synthesizing a unique nanographene predicted in the 1970s, which conclusively demonstrates that carbon in very specific forms has magnetic properties that could permit future spintronic applications. The results have just been published in the renowned journal Nature Nanotechnology.

Depending on the shape and orientation of their edges, graphene nanostructures (also known as nanographenes) can have very different properties – for example,...

Im Focus: Electronic map reveals 'rules of the road' in superconductor

Band structure map exposes iron selenide's enigmatic electronic signature

Using a clever technique that causes unruly crystals of iron selenide to snap into alignment, Rice University physicists have drawn a detailed map that reveals...

Im Focus: Developing a digital twin

University of Texas and MIT researchers create virtual UAVs that can predict vehicle health, enable autonomous decision-making

In the not too distant future, we can expect to see our skies filled with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) delivering packages, maybe even people, from location...

Im Focus: The coldest reaction

With ultracold chemistry, researchers get a first look at exactly what happens during a chemical reaction

The coldest chemical reaction in the known universe took place in what appears to be a chaotic mess of lasers. The appearance deceives: Deep within that...

Im Focus: How do scars form? Fascia function as a repository of mobile scar tissue

Abnormal scarring is a serious threat resulting in non-healing chronic wounds or fibrosis. Scars form when fibroblasts, a type of cell of connective tissue, reach wounded skin and deposit plugs of extracellular matrix. Until today, the question about the exact anatomical origin of these fibroblasts has not been answered. In order to find potential ways of influencing the scarring process, the team of Dr. Yuval Rinkevich, Group Leader for Regenerative Biology at the Institute of Lung Biology and Disease at Helmholtz Zentrum München, aimed to finally find an answer. As it was already known that all scars derive from a fibroblast lineage expressing the Engrailed-1 gene - a lineage not only present in skin, but also in fascia - the researchers intentionally tried to understand whether or not fascia might be the origin of fibroblasts.

Fibroblasts kit - ready to heal wounds

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