Green Buildings

  • Global PVT market on track for more growth

    Global PVT market on track for more growth

    PVT collectors – which use solar radiation to produce both heat and electricity – have been gaining in popularity in a rising number of markets around the world. In 2019, the Netherlands, France and Spain claimed the top spots for the most PVT capacity added in a year. In 2020, they were...
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  • Germany’s biggest solar-heated house nears completion

    Germany’s biggest solar-heated house nears completion

    This summer, the first families will be able to move into Solardomizil III, Germany’s soon-to-be-largest showcase of residential solar thermal design. The multi-family property is being put up by FASA, a solar thermal-only construction firm founded in 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall...
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  • How to design an 85 % solar-heated and 100 % solar air-conditioned house

    How to design an 85 % solar-heated and 100 % solar air-conditioned house

    During an online meeting from 1 to 2 July, the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling programme will launch a new global research platform called Task 66 Solar Energy Buildings. The researchers participating in the new task intend to develop and popularise a building standard focused on...
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  • Strategies to promote solar envelopes

    Strategies to promote solar envelopes

    In the last four years, the multidisciplinary IEA SHC Task 56 research group worked intensively on strategies to increase the market penetration of solar envelope systems. The group has found that prefabrication, a customisable appearance and an interdisciplinary planning process can...
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  • Up to 500,000 home renovations in France by 2021

    Up to 500,000 home renovations in France by 2021

    The #SolariseHeat initiative has helped Europe’s solar thermal associations push for better funding conditions, Edwige Porcheyre, Project Coordinator at French Enerplan, said at the Pushing #SolariseHeat Forward online workshop hosted by Solar Heat Europe in mid-November 2020. Enerplan’s...
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  • Surface synergies and conflicts in smart cities

    Surface synergies and conflicts in smart cities

    Surface area is an important but limited resource in cities that aim to become climate neutral. It can be used to, for example, generate heat or electricity via active solar systems, improve air quality via greening, or provide cooling thanks to highly reflective and emissive materials....

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  • Financial and environmental benefits of solar heat pumps

    Financial and environmental benefits of solar heat pumps

    As a source of energy for brine heat pumps, a PV-thermal collector field is well suited to reducing power demand in existing and to-be-renovated single-family homes, researchers at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, also known as ZHAW, have found. They compared combinations of PVT...
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  • EU to have 35 million building units renovated by 2030

    EU to have 35 million building units renovated by 2030

    This October saw the unfolding of two landmark events that will have a major impact on renewable energy markets for decades to come. On 14 October, the Renovation Wave communication was published, its aim being to “at least double the annual energy renovation rate of residential and non-...
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  • “Use mandates to boost established markets, but not to build up new once”

    “Use mandates to boost established markets, but not to build up new ones”

    Ten years after Hawaii’s Solar Hot Water Mandate was issued the Hawaii Solar Energy Association won a lawsuit to weed out a fatal flaw of the regulation that required all new single-family homes to install a solar water heater since 2010 unless one of four variances can be met. The flaw was...
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  • Solar-heated multi-family buildings gain popularity in Germany

    Solar-heated multi-family buildings gain popularity in Germany

    Many new largely solar-heated houses in Germany are multi-family buildings, and their number is growing, according to Sonnenhaus-Institut (Solar House Institute), an alliance of about 300 architects, planners, building companies and system integrators that specialise in the design or...
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  • Solar houses: above 95 % solar fraction is possible

    Solar houses: above 95 % solar fraction is possible

    Between 2014 and 2019, the Austrian Climate and Energy Fund supported the construction of over 100 solar-heated houses, 19 of which were monitored following completion. Regardless of whether it was a lightweight or a brick house that was put up, the rooftop or facade collector system...
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  • Grants for 600,000 renewable heating systems in England

    Grants for 600,000 renewable heating systems in England

    In early August, the UK government announced a GBP 2 billion (USD 2.61 billion) Green Homes Grant scheme that will fund up to two-thirds of the cost of home improvements, including solar thermal systems, heat pumps and insulation, for over 600,000 residential buildings. From the end of...
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