Net-Zero Houses: Designing for the 2013 Solar Decathlon
Keywords:Solar Decathlon, Solar houses, Net-zero houses, North American house
Residential buildings contribute a significant percentage of total energy consumption in developed countries and about eleven percent in the USA. Among U.S. governmental initiatives related to solar energy application to residential design, the Solar Decathlon competition, organized by the U.S. Department of Energy, stands out as the most architecturally relevant.
Through the lens of a 2013 Solar Decathlon entry, this paper discusses the evolution of technologies and the changes in the architecture of the American single-family house when solar energy is used as a primary energy source. The design strategy of our 2013 Solar Decathlon team is to maximize the effectiveness of the PV array while keeping the costs low. The resulting net-zero houses will also be significantly more affordable than the typical Solar Decathlon house, which is a fundamental condition if these houses are to have an impact in the housing market.
Internet reference: http ://www.energystar.gov. The Energy Star program by the US. Environmental Protection Agency certifies new homes that meet strict energy efficiency guidelines. These homes are independently verified to be at least 15% more energy efficient than homes built to the 2009 Intemational Energy Conservation Code (IECC), and feature additional measures that deliver a total energy efficiency improvement of up to 30 percent compared to typical new homes and even more compared to most resale homes.
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http://www .energystar.gov/index.cfm ?fuseaction=find_a product.
Other legislation, codes, program s or agencies supporting energy conservation are: The National Appliance Energy Conservation Act (NAECA); ASHRAE Standard
2 (residential energy standard); 2012 International Energy Conservation Code
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Solar JVwas completed in 1959 following a contest on solar house design.
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