Passive House Training

I recently completed the first three days of training as a Certified Passive House Consultant last week. During the first day of class, I was struck by the fact that there are a lot of really smart people studying the Passive House approach. I was impressed by that, and I felt really honored to have been accepted into this year’s training program! Each of the 25 students in my class seemed to fully grasp the fact that designing and building a Passive House is rooted in attention paid to many small details culminating in a very simple yet ultra high-performance home.

Passive House is about the creation of buildings that use less than 20% of the energy consumed by typical buildings; buildings that offer superior indoor air quality and comfort, buildings that are inexpensive to own and simple to operate.

The training program is my first in-depth look at the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP), which is a house modeling software, a compilation of research and development tools 20 + years in the making – tools that are integrated into a somewhat massive computer model that allow a Certified PH Consultant to select and balance each detail of a Passive House. The model allows an experienced user the specific ability to drive down the cost of the home being designed, while identifying the details that must be retained if a Passive House project is to be successful. Once a Passive House is built, in order for it to be certified, it must pass specific performance tests, the PHPP is the most precise tool available to design for a certifiable outcome.

The Artisans Group currently has three Passive House projects in design development, created by our Certified Passive House Consultant, Tessa Smith. It’s really very exciting to see the market ready and eager to accept these standards. It’s not a tough decision once people get a sense for the comfort, beauty, endurance, performance and amazingly short payback of a Passive House, relative to a code-built home.

For more information about the Passive House standards, go to the PHIUS website.

I will report back occasionally as our projects become more fully developed!

Posted on May 05, 2010

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