Technical systems

Almost all of the analysed buildings have a solar thermal system. Flat-plate collectors or vacuum collectors are integrated either in the fa├žade or placed on the roof. The very low remaining space heating demand of these buildings makes the energy needed for domestic water heating an important end use. A solar DHW or combined DHW and space heating system further reduce the consumption of non-renewable energy.

Four of the six projects have a grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) installation on the roof. The power supplied by the systems ranges from 1 kWp (kilowatt peak) up to over 16 kWp. Different PV technologies as thin film, poly-crystalline or mono-crystalline solar cells were used. In low energy buildings, electricity represents a considerable part of the energy balance, especially if this is considered in units of primary energy.

All projects have a mechanical ventilation system with heat recovery. The efficiency of the systems range from 80 per cent to 95 per cent. Three projects have earth pipes to preheat the supply of fresh air. This prevents the heat exchanger from freezing during very low temperatures.

To produce the needed remaining heat, a full range of technologies has been used, including heat pumps, biomass, gas or electric-resistance elements. The latter is used in the Lindas row house project, which accounts for the very high primary energy demand seen in Figure 1.1.1. The range of technologies used in the houses is summarized in Table 1.3.1.

Table 1.3.1 Technical systems

Direct Water PV Earth Mechanical Heat Heat Biomass Gas Electric gain collector pipe ventilation recovery pump resistance

1 Lindas

2 Gelsenkirchen

3 Thening

4 Sunny Woods

5 Stans

6 Vienna

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