Passivhaus

On Sunday, some of the UK's leading building performance experts joined Dr Wolfgang Feist and Witta Ebel of the Passivhaus Institute, visiting some of our latest domestic and non-domestic Passivhaus projects in London. The purpose of the visits was to review the last 12 months of data analysis and inspect the live data that is being produced, in order to check if Passivhaus is working in the UK climate.

heat leaking out of ventilation grilles

A lot of heat is lost from buildings in winter through simple bathroom mechanical extract fans. Furthermore, people all over the UK suffer from cold drafts and heat loss caused by primitive ventilation grilles in the outside walls of their house. This thermal image of a house next to our Passfield Drive retrofit, illustrates the terrible heat loss that occurs in such houses before renovation, even though it seems that everyone in the street has tried to board and tape over the ventilation grilles! (see picture below).

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Justin-Bere-BRE-Passivhaus-at the-Innovation Park

Jaya Skandamoorthy (BRE director of Enterprise and Innovation) attended a meeting at bere:architects today with Virginia Cinquemani (BRE Innovation Park) in order to establish the building and training and disemination programme around our competition-winning Chestnut House low cost passivhaus prototypes at the Watford Innovation Park.

The semi-detached pair of houses, designed in collaboration with the Prince of Wales' Foundation for Building Communities, will be completed in time for a ministerial opening in September 2012.

passivhaus-tea-cosy-effect

Cold Weather and the Elderly: As the cold weather bites, vulnerable and elderly people are the ones who will suffer the most, and they are the least able to fight the cold, damp conditions.

Rising Energy Prices: With rising energy prices, more and more people are slipping into fuel poverty.

passfield-drive-passivhaus-thermal-image

 

Last Tuesday morning we visited our ‘towards Passivhaus’ Retrofit-for-the-Future project at 3 Passfield Drive in East London to take some thermal images of the finished retrofit. We wanted to take advantage of the cold snap that is being experienced across the country to check the thermal performance of the building.

At 8.30am on Tuesday morning the outside temperature was 1.5°C. The thermal images of the front facades of Passfield Drive, shown above in Fig 1, are a powerful visual indication of just how much energy this retrofit is saving.

bere:architects shortlisted for BRE UK Passivhaus Competition for both Watford a

It has just been announced that bere:architects in collaboration with the Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment have been shortlisted in the BRE UK Passivhaus Competition for both the Watford and the Ravenscraig sites. The brief was to design a semi-detached residential Passivhaus for Watford where one dwelling will be allocated for social housing and one for mid-range market housing.

Mayville Community Centre Passivhaus

Compare the thermal image of our Passivhaus Mayville Community Centre with a nearby school built in 1958 (click more below). Same time, same camera settings. Use the temperature scale to see the facade temperature. The nearer to yellow, the more heat is being wasted. The nearer to blue or black, the less heat is being wasted. Enough said.

Whitehill Bordon Eco-Town Sustainable Housing

It has just been announced that bere:architects, in collaboration with the Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment, have been shortlisted in the Whitehill Bordon Eco-Town Terrace Competition to design three zero-carbon terraced houses on the northern edge of the newly designated South Downs National Park in Hampshire.

The Mayville Community Centre picked up the award for Best Public Building at the 3R (Refurb, Rethink, Retrofit) Awards 2011 at a presentation held last night at the Royal Garden Hotel, Kensington, where many of those playing a pioneering role in this sector were present. 

Following the success of the inaugural Retrofit Awards, launched in 2010, the awards were expanded to include all areas of the retrofit and refurbishment markets.

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