Jack Pivac’s home in Dunedin is passive solar designed – built to capture, store and release heat from the sun. The house is oriented to face North (South in the Northern Hemisphere) and is long and thin so that almost all the rooms have at least one north facing window. The house warms up during the day and heat is stored in the insulated concrete flooring which then re-radiates heat in the cool of the evening. Good insulation in the ceiling, underfloor and wall cavities reduces any heat loss. In addition, two trombe walls have been built onto the exterior of the house wall to circulate solar heated air in the house. In a trombe wall system, air from the house is heated by the sun in a gap between glass and a dark coloured surface. An interior vent at the top of the wall allows warm air to enter the house, whilst cooler air from inside the house takes its place through a bottom interior vent. When the sun goes down the top and bottom vents are shut to stop the air flow from reversing from hot to cold.
You can listen to the podcast of this radio interview with Jack Pivac about PASSIVE SOLAR DESIGN. Please contact Maureen at firstname.lastname@example.org
A trombe wall has been designed and installed to bring heat into the house. Note the vents top and bottom, plus the baffles to slow air movement.