PASSIVE HOUSES

ENERGY BUILDING TYPES

Based on the energy used in the operation of buildings, we distinguish several building types / qualities.
Which are:

  • low-energy buildings are  with a heating energy demand of less than 50-60 kWh / m2y year, excluding other energy consumers, the total energy demand of the house will not be more than 90 kWh / m2year.
  • nearly zero energy buildings are buildings where heat loss is minimized, solar heat gain is well utilized but protected against summer heating, building services systems are efficient and have low auxiliary energy requirements. It obtains energy demand from renewable energy sources. Mandatory from 1 January 2021 for all new buildings.
  • autonomous house is an independent building that can operate independently of the utility networks (water, gas, electricity, sewer). It has a very low energy loss, using energy-saving equipment, and treats wastewater within its own plot.
  • active house, a building that produces more energy than it uses on a renewable, primarily solar basis.
  • passive house, described in more detail below.

THE PASSIVE HOUSE CONCEPT

Developed by the Passivhaus Institut in Darmstadt, it is a highly energy-efficient building type.

“A passive house is a building in which thermal comfort (ISO 7730) can only be achieved by reheating or recooling the fresh air volume flow required to achieve satisfactory air quality (DIN 1946) – without the use of additional air.” – Dr. Wolfgang Feist

Its heating energy demand per square meter is 15 kWh / m²year. We provide this value with passive architectural and mechanical solutions:

  • properly oriented, compact building mass,
  • optimally insulated, heat-bridge-free building envelope,
  • airtight baffles,
  • solar energy utilization with large, south-facing windows,
  • high-efficiency heat recovery ventilation,
  • passive protection against summer overheating.

Only buildings that meet the PHI certification criteria and have received the “Quality Controlled Passive House” certificate as a result of the quality control process can be called passive houses.

PASSIVE HOUSE REQUIREMENTS AND DESIGN

To obtain the qualification, the following conditions must be verified with a PHPP (Passive House Design Package) calculation for a passive family house:

  • U-value of building boundary structures max. 0.15 W / (m²K),
  • or heating heat demand: max 10 W / m²,
  • total primary energy demand of the building: max 120 kWh / m² year (including household use),
  • air tightness max. 0.6 1 / h (measured at a pressure difference of 50 Pa),

In addition to these, other important criteria are:

  • the frequency of overheating (internal temperature above 25 ° C) is below 10% per year,
  • the total U-value of the windows must be below 0.8 W / (m²K),
  • heat bridge free design,
  • efficient heat recovery ventilation is required (nWRG> 75%, according to PHI certificate), with low power consumption (<0.45 Wh / m3 at delivered air volume),
  • production and distribution of DHW with the lowest possible heat loss,
    efficient use of household electricity.

The design process is fundamentally no different from a non-passive building, but for optimal results, the builder must clarify to himself before selecting the site that he wants to build a passive building. Subsequent redesign of completed concept plans or building permits into passive houses is done at the expense of cost-effectiveness, and the latter task cannot be solved in most cases without a permit modification.

Knowing the meteorological data for the site, the building should be designed with energy gains and losses constantly monitored.

GREEN BUILDING

Apart from taking the client’s requirements into consideration, we find it especially important for the buildings we design to represent sustainable, environmentally oriented architecture with a well-reasoned, coherent and clear design.

We devote great attention to energy-efficiency, the creation of a healthy living space as well as low operation costs.

A fashionable concept used today in connection with public buildings is covered by the expressionGreen building, in which the word “green” does not refer to the plants in the building and its environment, but instead refers to the building being environmentally friendly.

The expectations about Hungarian building energy regulations (energy efficiency) and the well-known passive houses include the reduction and minimisation of energy consumption during the operation of the building.

Here, however, the purpose is to consume the smallest possible amount of the earth’s resources during the entire lifecycle of the building, i.e. the excavation, manufacture of building materials, planning, construction, use, operation, as well as demolition and the disposal of the construction-demolition waste.

Primary aspects when planning a ‘green’ public building:

  • energy efficiency: reduction of the use of heating and air-conditioning with natural instruments, use of the sun and the wind
  • protection of natural resources: rational use of resources through the planning and construction of the building and through the selection of building materials
  • back to nature: emphasis on harmony and integration with the environment

Several countries have set up various green building classifications. The classification systems most commonly used in Hungary include LEED, BREEAM, DGNB and EU-Green Building:

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a green building assessment system introduced in the United States of America in 1998 and is now internationally recognised.

New or even existing buildings may be graded in various categories and on the basis of the number of points awarded the project may be classed as Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum.

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment (BRE) Environmental Assessment Method) is the world’s fits environment-conscious building classification system, set up in the United Kingdom. The classification consists of two parts; first, the building is classified during planning, then after the construction work has been completed.

Classification may be: pass, good, very good, excellent, outstanding.

DGNB (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen) is the classification system of the German Sustainable Building Association, which is one of the youngest, launched in 2009; this, it is not so widely used in Central Eastern Europe. It is well thought through and is based on the DIN German standards. Here bronze, silver and gold grades can be achieved.

EU-Green Building classification was created by the European Union and is a much more flexible and less strict requirement system than those listed above.

We work with excellent engineering specialists and attested specialist companies. In all cases, we examine the feasibility of the use of renewable energy and endeavour to use innovative technologies and quality building materials.

The acquisition of any green classification may make the given public building much more attractive on the property market for investors, owners or tenants.