One of the many friends of Jetson Green in attendance at Greenbuild this year pointed our attention to the ecobee thermostat, a high-tech, wirelessly connected, programmable thermostat. In addition to controlling temperature, ecobee also gives you control over the fan settings (allowing you to have the air circulation operate for a minimum number of minutes per hour). Ecobee measures humidity and can be used to control humidification/dehumidification equipment.
Insulated concrete forms (ICF) are an appealing method of construction because they offer a good combination of strength and energy performance. For foundations, they offer a far more insulated wall than conventional CMU or poured concrete. There are those who don’t like the plastics in ICFs, but not all ICFs are made with petroleum products. Durisol has been making ICF blocks using only wood fiber and cement, and these blocks offer a number of advantages that make them an appealing construction material.
Radiant flooring is a popular method for heating a space. Typicaly, installing a radiant slab on grade has required the time- and labor-intensive process of laying down wire mesh and then tying the tubing to the grid of the mesh to provide an even layout. But using the Creatherm radiant floor panel makes it faster and easier to install radiant tubing, as well as providing an insulation layer beneath the floor.
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Wooden shipping pallets are typically a low-end commodity. Sometimes a pallet will get reused a few times before it ends up being scrapped or used as firewood. But Icelander Högni Stefan Thorgeirsson, owner of Iceland-based Arctic Plank, found a better use for it and produces flooring made from upcycled used pallet wood.
Photovoltaic panels and solar hot water panels both provide useful benefits for the buildings they are attached to, but sometimes there is limited space on the roof, and usually only one or the other is installed. Solimpeks, a solar panel manufacturer based in Turkey, has been producing solar panels for a long time, and has an elegant solution to the problem: a panel that produces both electricity and hot water. It turns out that the Solimpeks Volther dual-use panels increase efficiency more than you might expect.
Kraftplex and Wellboard are two wood-based products made by Well Ausstellungssystem Gmbh. They’re intended for flat-panel applications, furniture design, and more, and they’re both made from 100% cellulose. That means there is no formaldehyde added in adhesives or binders (although there is some naturally occurring formaldehyde in wood). The difference between the two is that Kraftplex is a flat sheet of the material, and Wellboard comes in a few different corrugated profiles.