09 Mar '12, 10pm

Thermal mass in passive solar design

Thermal mass in passive solar design

SUN POWER: This passive solar home in Minden, Nev., features an open sunspace area and a raised interior floor with extensive thermal mass. (Photo: Donald Aitken/National Renewable Energy Lab) People have been talking about passive solar buildings for a long time, although there have been surprisingly few actually built during that time. In the 1970s and early 1980s (around the time of the first energy crisis), passive solar design began to emerge and many architects and builders experimented with it, with varying degrees of success. The basic principles are pretty straightforward, but getting all the details right can be challenging. Probably the biggest issue is finding the right combination of windows to let the sun’s energy in, and amount of thermal mass to store that energy. Thermal mass in passive solar homes can be concrete or tile floors , concrete walls, and large...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/your-home/remodeling-design/stories/th...

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