Fifty countries were represented by the 700 attendees at this year’s Passive Low Energy Architecture conference (PLEA). Rapid fire presentations were the order of the day with all presentations taking no more than 10 minutes and some taking only 5 minutes.
There were two presentations on PH in Ireland.
One reported on the recorded summertime performance of passive houses in the Northern Ireland climate and showed that the four passive houses monitored performed within spec. (within specifications?). However, design improvements were identified in two of the houses compared with the original build which further improved the summertime performance of the houses. Interestingly the occupants survey showed that the home owners of houses built to the minimum building regulations reported similar levels of satisfaction/dissatisfaction to the PH homeowners over last summer.
The second presentation examined if passive houses meet the nZEB requirements and takes the case study of the Bennett social housing scheme in Enniscorthy. It found that the houses which were designed as passive houses are in fact nZEB compliant and the energy monitoring confirms that the houses are performing as expected.
In addition to the PH presentations further Irish research was also represented including a presentation by Adam O Donovan from CIT on the opportunities offered by a thermal comfort portal developed by CIT.
Many delegates also presented on PH with an excellent presentation on post occupancy review of passive houses and houses built to the minimum building regulations by Oxford Brookes University. It found that there wasn’t a direct correlation between energy consumption and air infiltration in the 200 houses monitored. Another presentation found that LEED office buildings had a lower occupant satisfaction rating in a survey of 2000 office workers compared with the non-LEED offices in the survey. Overall, the conference offered lots of food for thought for the Passive House and low energy experts.
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