The HOME for healthy and sustainable construction
Passive House explained in 30 seconds
Passive House provides a healthy and comfortable home that is energy efficient and sustainable. Most importantly, it is economical.
This is done by separating the internal environment from the external environment. While the external environment changes, the internal environment constantly stays between 20 and 25 Degrees Celsius. Passive House creates a comfortable environment, whilst often saving more than 90% of the heating and cooling expenses.
This is achieved by creating a high performing outer shell of the building. Supplying fresh air 24 hours a day and making use of free energy harvesting and heat recovery.
Passive House is more than just a low-energy building. It is a building standard that provides healthy and comfortable living space whilst at the same time being energy efficient and sustainable. The good thing is that it is economical.
The concept is straight forward; by creating a highly efficient outer shell of a building, the energy consumption of that building will be drastically reduced during the time of use. Another positive effect is that, the lifetime of the structure will increase significantly. At the same time, the life quality for the occupants is getting enhanced. Passive House is a concept that can be applied by anyone and to any building project. It is a proven concept, formulated in a flexible and simple energy modelling tool called PHPP. Smart Plus Homes believes that the PHPP is a calculation that should be mandatory to all building projects that create a conditioned space; the same as engineering is required for every structure build.
There are 5 key components
of a Passive House
of a Passive House
Absence of Thermal Bridges
Thermal bridges can considerably increase the transmission heat losses through the outer thermal shell of a building (building envelope), which increases heating demands in winter and cooling demand in summer. A Thermal Bridge is a spot in the thermal envelope, where an inconsistency is present. An irregularity could be a change of geometry like a building corner or a material change like a metal fixing.
Airtightness of the building
The Thermal Insulation can only perform at its best if no air movement is present, most easily demonstrated by a woolly sweater and a windbreaker jacket. On a cold windy day, wearing a woolly sweater or a windproof jacket does not keep a person warm. However, if the windbreaker is worn over the sweater, a person stays warm. This improvement of the thermal insulation (woolly sweater) by using an airtightness system (windproof jacket) is the positive effect of airtightness in conjunction with thermal insulation.
Passive House Windows
Transparent materials like glass let the short-wave radiation from the sun (sunlight) through, but the long wave radiation (heat) is absorbed and then passed on. In double glazed windows, the trapped gas between the layers of glass is the thermal insulator. In this case, the energy can enter the building as sunlight, but the energy cannot leave the building as heat. A Passive House uses this principle in a cold climate. In a hot climate, this effect is not wanted because it leads to overheating of the building. Shades or low thermal emissivity coatings are needed in a hot climate.
Ventilation Heat Recovery
Efficient heat recovery ventilation is the key for a good indoor air quality and energy saving. By supplying fresh air to areas like bedrooms and living rooms, and extracting from the wet areas like the bathroom, kitchen and laundry 24/7, indoor air quality stays high. The energy demand is minimal, and the heat recovery can recover up to 95%. For example, if you have 20⁰C inside the building and you have 40⁰C outside, the supplied air can be cool as 22⁰C without using a cooling system. If you have 22⁰C inside and you have 2⁰C outside, the supplied air can be as warm as 20⁰C without using a heating system.