Tag Archives: Energy

Lowe’s Smart Home Survey – Results

Smart home systems

A new smart home study released by Lowe’s found that while Rosie the Robot is the futuristic feature consumers would want most from “The Jetsons,” more than 70 percent of smart phone users in America just wish they could control something in their home from their mobile device without getting out of bed. Lowe’s 2014 Smart Home…

Next Trend in Passive House Design: Passive Hospitals

Passive House Hospital Design

Passive house design has gone from an emerging architectural trend to a firmly established movement that’s entrenched itself in the professional and public mind. Even so, most people – both industry experts and laypeople – take the term literally, and equate “passive house” with, you know, houses. The truth, meanwhile, is that the same principles…

Exterior Sheathing System Improves Energy Efficiency

C-SIS exterior sheathing system

Composite Panel Building Systems announced the introduction of a new sheathing system that can improve the energy efficiency of existing buildings and homes, as well as new construction projects.  The C-SIS exterior sheathing system combines insulation, an air/water barrier, structural components, and a water drainage plane into a compact panel that can be installed easily…

Composite Material Reduces Cost of Solar Panels

Yingli Solar

Yingli Green Energy, the largest vertically integrated photovoltaic module manufacturer in the world, known as “Yingli Solar,” announced that they have successfully completed trial production of monocrystalline ingots for solar panels using new material technology. Instead of using traditional graphite crucibles when pulling monocrystalline ingots, Yingli experimented with crucibles made from a carbon-carbon (C-C) composite…

Thermal Bridging Guide Provides Energy Efficiency Solutions

Building Envelope Thermal Analysis Guide

Morrison Hershfield announced last week that the book Building Envelope Thermal Bridging Guide – Analysis, Applications, and Insights is now public and can be downloaded. The guide aims to overcome obstacles confronting the industry with respect to mitigating thermal bridging to reduce energy consumption in buildings. According to the guide, “thermal bridging is caused by highly conductive…

Building Energy Management Systems Save Energy and Money

Building energy management system

“A Building Energy Management System (BEMS) is an integrated system of software, hardware and services that controls energy use through information and communication technology,” according to The Energy Collective.  “Used primarily in commercial buildings, BEMS technology works by monitoring, automating, and controlling building systems such as heating, ventilation, air conditioning, thermostats, and lighting to increase…

Log Home Builders Specializing in Beetle-Killed Pine & Energy Efficiency

I have had the pleasure of writing about this Colorado company before and its skilled use of beetle-killed pine in some of the homes it builds. For those interested in log homes, or issues involving beetle-kill pine, this is a company worth following. What follows is taken from an old post, just to whet the…

Ocean Wave Energy Provides Continuous Renewable Power

ocean waves provide continuous renewable energy

Last week the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced that it will consider issuing a research lease for Oregon State University to study ocean wave energy off the Oregon coast.  The Northwest National Marine Renewable Energy Center is seeking approval to build a test site about 5 miles off the Newport coast to study utility-scale…

Skylights Contribute to Energy Savings

Room with skylights by VELUX

Homes that utilize skylights, in combination with vertical windows, to provide adequate levels of daylight tend to be more energy efficient, according to a study commissioned by VELUX America.  Homes with skylights need less vertical windows to achieve the same amount of daylight.  Less vertical windows increase the energy efficiency of a building. “While we have…

Honda Smart Home is Built for Your Green Lifestyle

Built in collaboration with UC Davis in California, the Honda Smart Home is a three-year green building project that will monitor typical energy use needs for average Americans and their families.

Case Study: Eagleyew – A High Efficiency Natural Building on Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada

The Story of Eagleyew: A High Efficiency Natural Building on Vancouver Island, B.C., Canada I’m pleased to say that I have been building Natural Buildings for a number of years now. My work has taken me up and down the West coast of North America, with a focus in the Pacific Northwest. I’ve been calling…

CSO Arquitectura’s Modular Housing System: SAVMS

CSO Arquitectura teamed with prefab construction specialists Torsan and created Sistema Abierto de Viviendas Modulares Sostenibles (SAVMS) which translate to the “open sustainable modular housing system.”

D*Haus’ D*Dynamic Origami-Inspired Shape Changing House

Architecture in origami form is a remarkable concept which is hard to envision but D*Haus has come up with a house design that follows the very dynamics of the paper folding art. D*Haus’ transformation house, D*Dynamic, has yet to be built but the conception is likely to take hold. They have designed furniture, such as…

Window Sweat: What Wet Windows Are Trying to Tell You

Condensation on the inside of your windows during the winter may indicate that you should look at upgrading your windows. More likely, however, water on the inside of your windows is a symptom of a completely different problem with your home.

The Kill A Watt Energy Meter: A green gadget lover’s dream

Kill A Watt power usage meter by P3 International

The Kill A Watt Energy Meter is a simple and remarkably useful device for revealing how much appliances are costing you to operate. A few experiments with one of these meters have saved me hundreds of dollars in energy waste and hundreds more in unnecessary appliance upgrades that I probably otherwise would have made. A…

Tankless Water Heaters Made Simple

The new NPE Series greatly reduces time and labor for a typical tankless retrofit by utilizing existing gas lines and existing flue chases. In fact, this new technology allows installation time to be reduced by half compared to other tankless water heaters. All these technical advances make the Navien NPE tankless series ideal for tank water heater replacement.

Blowing Insulation: An Easy DIY Project With A Huge Payback

blowing cellulose insulation using a power blower

Blowing insulation into an attic space is a remarkably simple home energy retrofit project that can have truly enormous financial and energy saving payback. Insulation is one of the cheapest components of a home, yet has the largest potential for saving money over the course of the life of a building. In fact, many insulation…

Ten Facts About Solar Panels

There is an increasing awareness in Australia about the obvious advantages and benefits of switching to solar power. Not only does it contribute to a more ecologically sustainable environment, but in the long term, it also saves you money on power bills.