Checking Out the 99k House Competition

Hybrid

Back in September 2007, Rice Design Alliance and the Houston Chapter of the AIA announced the 99k House Competition.  The general goal of the competition was to create an innovative design for a small house that is affordable, sustainable, and energy efficient.  More specifically, the competition called for a single family house with up to 1,400 sf of space, including 3 bedrooms, 1.5-2 bathrooms, on a 50′ x 100′ site in a historic neighborhood of Houston.  The construction budget for each home had to be under $99,000, too.

And recently, Hybrid / ORA out of Seattle was declared the winner of the competition (pictured above).  In addition, four other finalists each took $5k in prize money and had their home designs published for all to see.  Make sure to check out their ideas and download their designs below. 

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By |June 10th, 2008|Energy Efficiency, Single Family|0 Comments

How About SMEG's Retro Modern, Efficient Frig?

Black Orange Red

This fridge has a fantastic retro appearance and could save you a lot of money on your utility bills.  Designed by SMEG, it’s a compact 9.22 cubic feet and uses only  305 kWh/year.  That makes it one of the most efficient it its class according to the government’s energy guide, which is used to rate all Energy Star appliances.  This stylish fridge isn’t big — it’s under 5 feet tall, but maybe it will encourage you to trade space for style and save energy as a result. 

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By |June 9th, 2008|Energy Efficiency, Modern design|0 Comments

New "Green Machine" Waste Heat Generator Launches with Fast Payback, Cheap Electricity

50kw Green Machine 50kw Green Machine

At this very moment, ElectraTherm is releasing details of the successful installation of its new product, a commercial waste heat generator called the Green Machine.  ElectraTherm tested their first Green Machine at none other than my alma mater, Southern Methodist University, and the results exceeded initial expectations.  Stated simply, the Green Machine makes electricity from residual industrial heat that usually just goes to waste.  ElectraTherm’s new product employs minimal heat (200 degrees F liquid) to generate fuel-free, emissions-free electricity at $0.03 – $0.04 per kWh during a three-year payback period and at under $0.01 per kWh after that.  SMU’s test of the 50 kW Green Machine reached output well beyond the 50 kW rating. 

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By |May 29th, 2008|Energy Efficiency, Gadgets, News|2 Comments

Element Fan, Big Ass Fans' New Energy Efficient Fan

Candy Red

You’ve probably seen Big Ass Fans in the gym or in some larger space, and that’s because they’re huge and energy efficient.  Just last week, Big Ass Fans launched their newest product called the Element Fan.  Element uses the 10 airfoil and wiglet design to move air quietly and efficiently.  According to BAF: "At standard speed in a room with 16 ft. high ceilings Element is able to create comfortable breezes over an area larger than a basketball court, all while requiring less than 100 watts to operate. That is considerably less energy than even the most efficient small ceiling fan in production today."  I’ve been around these gargantuan fans and love them.  Seriously, they cool down a large space like nothing I’ve ever seen.  Plus, you can really get creative with the colors, so as far as large fans go, this is a dang good option to go with.    

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Effective Ad for Energy Efficient Lighting?

They definitely have a different style over there in the UK … I probably should have just linked to this in the twitter stream, but who knows, maybe someone will get a kick out of the video.  I sure as heck did.  Depending on where you work, this is potentially NSFW.

Via Green Design Girl.

By |May 21st, 2008|Energy Efficiency, Gadgets|0 Comments

Denver_Modern – a Simple, Efficient Modern Home

Denver_modern

If you’re like me, you like to follow what others are doing to build modern, energy efficient homes.  One such home I’ve been following is at Denver Modern.   Angelo, a local Denver designer, and his family are building their home on a narrow lot and have been blogging the progress since September 2006.  As you can tell from some of the images in this post, it’s cool pad with a small footprint.  The Haida cedar siding is distinct and deep in character — a modern touch I really like.  I can’t wait to see the interior take shape with all the materials they’ve been planning. 

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