£50,000 printed house released by WikiHouse

From: http://www.technology4change.com/page.jsp?id=312

Looking at the details in the PDF, a lot of the ideas are similar to those being used by ecofab for my project:
– see some screen grabs below.


From the article:

WikiHouse has released the design for a £50,000 printed house for the UK that could help tackle problems like urbanisation, climate change and inequality, say creators.

The design is the latest creation from the non-profit project that has been developed to help produce low-cost, high-performance houses that are suited to local needs.

The project, called WikiHouse, is an open source construction system which makes it possible for anyone to design, share, download, adapt and ‘print’ houses.

Users of the system can ‘print’ house parts from a standard sheet material like plywood, and the main structure assembled in about a day without the need for conventional construction skills, say creators.

“The open secret is that in reality almost everything we today call architecture is actually design for the 1%,” said WikiHouse co-designer Alastair Parvin of London-based design studio 00.

 

“The challenge facing the next generation of architects is how, for the first time, we will make our client not the 1% but the 100% – to radically democratise the production of architecture.”

He added: “We are moving into a future where the factory can be everywhere – and increasingly the design team can be everyone.”

WikiHouse is currently under development, with a growing community of teams and is seeking collaborators and funders.


Wall panel layers:

 

WikiHouse-Panel-detail

 

WikiHouse-Panel

Assembled wall panel:

Carbon Neutral Woodstove!

From http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/4651034/list?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=u176&utm_medium=email&utm_content=gallery20

Some models are carbon neutral. European woodstoves using the Nordic Ecolabelsystem are so efficient that the carbon emitted when they’re used properly is equal to the carbon a tree naturally emits while decomposing in the forest.

Appliances generating the most CO2 by 2016?

I’m not sure I’ve got this right, but I think the http://www.nhbcfoundation.org/Researchpublications/Energyefficientfixedappliances/tabid/518/Default.aspx post means that a 2016 built house (if to the regs !) will have the main areas of CO2 emmissions in order of magnitude as:

  • appliances (49%)
  • space heating (22%)
  • water heating (11%)
  • pumps and fans (10%)
  • lighting (8%)

So I’d better get those best rated appliances and building control systems for the kitchen and elsewhere.

Whole house shutdown could cut carbon emissions by a fifth

This article at http://www.building4change.com/page.jsp?id=1444 on “Whole house shutdown” says that:

Technology to turn off power to non-essential electrical items while residents sleep or are out can have major impact

A system that allows home occupants to conveniently and reliably turn off power to non-essential electrical items while they sleep or leave the house could cut household CO2 reductions by almost a fifth. This finding emerges from a study of technologies that could influence a reduction in energy consumption and associated CO2 emissions for a typical home built in 2016, carried out by NHBC Foundation.

From the nine technologies assessed, a system to remove power from all non-essential electrical items, called ‘whole house shutdown’, offered the greatest CO2 savings of 19 percent. The study also identifies individual socket shutdown units and waste water heat recovery as other technologies that can offer significant CO2 reductions of 16 percent and almost 7 percent respectively.

Some more Thermodynamic panel info

From a discussion on http://www.greenbuildingforum.co.uk/forum114/comments.php?DiscussionID=9511&page=1#Item_15

Gary

I consider these as a form of air source heat pump, without a fan or finned coils. The underlying technology is well established and should be as reliable as a GSHP.

The panels are a good solution for a marine environment – I wouldn’t use ASHP units near the sea as the coils rot after about 7 years due to salt corrosion, so they would be a cheaper alternative than GSHP for such areas.

I have seen a completed installation and the owners were very happy with it.

Solar thermal it ain’t however – there is an improvement in COP when the sun is shining but it won’t provide free energy.

Chris

As far as I can find there are two manufacturers of these systems, the best known being Energie in Portugal http://www.energie.pt/ but also a company called Energy Panel in Spain. http://www.energypanel.es/productos.aspx?idFamilia=1&idProducto=1

The problem I have with them is a seeming lack of independent verification of their claims for running costs. I’ve seen mention of various installations being independently monitored but all my previous efforts to get these reports have so far failed.

Does anyone know of any such independent verification?

Thermodynamic installed at Maidstone UTD Football Club

Just got this press release:

Thermodynamic installed at Maidstone UTD FC…
Project: Maidstone United Football Club – Gallagher Stadium
Client: Graham
Contractor: Gallagher / Greenheat

Thermogroup UK recently supplied two Thermodynamic systems, an Eco 2000 and an SB 24 to meet 100% of the hot water demand for showers and underfloor heating at the new home of Maidstone United FC.

MUFC were attracted to Thermodynamic because of the environmental factor and the potential savings possible against the originally specified electric heating system.

Thermodynamic panels at maidstone united

 

It was estimated that a 24 panel system, to provide underfloor heating to the clubhouse, would use a minimum load of 4.2kW of electricity. Based on this figure and assuming the system is used for an average of 5 hours a day, it is estimated that the SB 24 at MUFC will cost £2.10 per day or £766 per year to run (at £0.10/kW per hour).

The SB24 at MUFC is expected to have a payback of around 5.5 years and bring about an annual saving of £3000 when compared to the electric system that was originally specified.

Please note: The figures in this email are estimates only and we are in the process of installing energy monitors at MUFC to track the exact running costs, savings and payback period.

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Green Build Hub to be built at the Eden Project.

Planners have given the go-ahead for a centre demonstrating green building technologies to be developed on a site at Cornwall’s Eden Project.

The Green Build Hub (GBH), conceived by Cornwall Sustainable Building Trust (CSBT), will be constructed using new green techniques and materials and will target a BREEAM Outstanding rating. It will be delivered as part of a broader move to establish the St Austell area of mid-Cornwall as a focus for the development and manufacture of low carbon technologies and products, and for training and skills development.

Technology showcase

When complete the hub will showcase and trial new technologies and will be occupied by CSBT and allied companies Sustain Cornwall (SCL) and SW Ecowarehouse. The hub will be accessible to the public and will provide a meeting and training venue.

The project has been brought to planning approval by a collaboration of CSBT, ID+EA, Ocean Design Consultancy and Ward Williams Associates, with The Eden Project agreeing to a 99 year lease on the site.

The UK is more energy efficient than it’s peers :-)

Good result for the UK.
– it seems we are doing the same, with less energy than other large economies 🙂

The UK has taken the top slot an energy efficiency ranking of 12 of the world’s largest economies. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) gave the UK the number one position in its first International Energy Efficiency Scorecard report.
It ranks 12 of the world’s largest economies across 27 metrics to evaluate how efficiently these economies use energy.

– http://www.aceee.org/research-report/e12a

The report shows there is, as you’d expect, plenty of scope to do better. But, for me, this is a great start.

Polar bear inspired external wall heating system

Follow the bears

The biomimicry-based technology imitates the effect of fur on polar bears, the individual hairs on the polar bear being hollow and guiding sunlight directly to the skin. As the polar bear’s skin is black, it is able to absorb light efficiently, and convert it into heat which it transfers to the body.

http://www.building4change.com/page.jsp?id=1339

External wall insulation system (EWIS) specialist Sto has brought its StoSolar solid wall heating system concept from Germany to the UK market.

The system incorporates a translucent glass render finish covering tiny capillaries that guide sunlight to a black absorbent layer, which converts solar to thermal energy. The masonry stores this heat and releases it back into the building as radiant heat, reducing the internal heating requirement.

Low sun means high heat

The amount of heat generated by the system depends on the angle of the sun. In summer, when the sun is high in the sky, less radiant energy is absorbed by the capillaries, so the heat generated is greatly reduced. In the winter, the low angle leads to the maximum amount of sunshine being transmitted to the absorbent layer ensuring that most heat is produced during the cold months.

StoSolar integrates into a Sto EWIS and is suitable for new and existing buildings when fixed to a solid wall that is not internally insulated. It will generally use 10-30 percent of a façade’s insulating surface area and be delivered to the construction site as prefabricated units to be incorporated into an external wall system.