02 Earth-Sheltered Active Home Plans
02 EARTH-SHELTERED ACTIVE HOME PLANS
Solar radiation, indoor air quality, water collection, treatment & conservation, and best earth insulation properties are the principles on which this active solar design is founded.
Earth-sheltered Active home is a wonderful place to live in - warm and quiet, with light flooding in from the south, a ventilation system providing clean and fresh air, sheltered by beautiful landscape. Being earth-sheltered also means that this eco-house provides a far more stable living environment than above-ground buildings.
The north side of this eco-house could be ideally embedded into the sloping ground of a hill but can also be built on flat ground, since excavated earth could easily reused to berm the building on all three sides.
The fully glazed south face is inclined at 60 degrees to the horizontal and encloses a greenhouse (conservatory) comprising an internal pond. The Greenhouse rises overhead the Ground Floor and First Floor to connect with glazed north-light reinforced concrete shells that have been designed for their outstanding sun-catching or wind-catching properties as well as roofing the eco-house. The Greenhouse makes use of the "greenhouse effect" principle to trap sun's rays and build up hot air that is further conveyed to the Living Room and up through the Mezzanine Floors, into the Bedrooms. The greenhouse also serves the purpose of space of socialising space and can also be used for growing vegetables.
Photovoltaic (PVC) solar panels located along the ridge convert sunlight into electricity. To ensure an efficient use of solar energy, materials with high thermal storage capacity were selected.
The Utility Room located in the north section of the eco-house shelters HVAC and other electro-mechanical equipment. In summertime, the ventilation system can also be reversed to circulate cooler air from the north side through the house thus cooling your home, if need be.
Sun-screening is an option if your local geographic latitude and climatic conditions so require.
Roof area can in its entirety be used for planting vegetables and fruits.
Walls and foundations are made of recycled concrete blocks with recycled paper fillings. Recycled glass is used for floor insulation. An insulating entrance air-lock has been provided, accessed through sliding doors made of tempered, insulated glass.
All windows are double-glazed, with possibilities of including the bead-wall system, too.
Water-saving toilet seats and other water-saving sanitary ware has been used throughout the project. All installations between the lower and upper floors run through a vertical service shaft, fully accessible for inspection and maintenance by means of access panels.