When I mentioned a project by students aiming to build the greenest house in Canada (by means of the Living Building Challenge and LEED Platinum certification), I noted that students planned to use “prefabricated straw bale walls.” It turns out they finished this portion of the project using BioSIPs from NatureBuilt Wall Systems in Ontario, Canada.
Zola European Windows recently sent us a press release with information about their new array of windows and doors made in a CAD/CAM facility in Europe. The company is owned by Florian Speier, a Swiss architect and Certified Passive House Consultant, and headquartered in Colorado to serve U.S. and Canadian customers. The aim is to provide products that are durable, energy-efficient, airtight, beautiful, and affordable.
In the USA, most windows are probably single- or double-glazed and some builders will use triple-glazed windows for Passive House and other high-performance homes. But in Hanover, Germany, a 12-glazed window prototype by Mariusz Paszkowski and Antoni Kostka was the star of the recent International Passive House Conference, according to Der Standard. Check out these windows with aerogel!
I’ve been following Matt Risinger’s blog for about a year, because he’s sharing great videos about high-performance homes in Austin, Texas. Take this video about using old pine siding from a home built in 1935. The siding is in a condition to be reclaimed because it’s had enough air to dry when wet over the years. Now that it’s being re-used, Risinger shares the vented rainscreen he used to make sure the siding lasts another 80 years.
This the new Blueair Sense designed by Claesson Koivisto Rune. It was designed to shatter barriers in the bland world of air purification with a contemporary design, touch-less control, compact size, low energy consumption, quiet operation, and optimal clean air delivery rate. All Blueair units are Energy Star certified and use “HEPA Silent” technology, and I understand Blueair Sense will be no different. I’ve asked Blueair for pricing and availability information and will update this article when I hear back.
I spent some time in the home improvement stores this weekend and noticed a newer bulb from Philips designed to replace the standard flood light. The BR30 LED bulb is Energy Star compliant, delivers 730 lumens, and uses a decent 13-watts of energy. Plus, it’s mercury free, lasts about 25,000 hours, and has a standard warm color of 2700 Kelvin. While the price is hovering at $40 at Home Depot right now, I expect that to slowly drop. Plus, the bulb is an easy install — just screw it in — so testing this is a no brainer.