The Passive House Association of Ireland

The Passive House Association of Ireland or PHAI is "a catalyst for the increased awareness of the opportunities and benefits of low energy design based on the Passive House Principles."[1] PHAI's mission is to "promote, educate, and facilitate, so as to develop a strong identity, understanding and demand for the passive house concept."[1] PHAI is an affiliated associate with the International Passive House Association and is a non-profit.[1] PHAI collects membership fees, but these fees go towards promotion of the Passive House Principle.

Membership[edit | edit source]

The Passive House Association of Ireland has five founding members. Each of the members are comprised of organizations that are leading users of Passive House techniques. The five founding members consist of Coillte Panel Products, Ecological Building Systems, Martin Murray Architects, Munster Joinery, and University of Ulster.[2]

Founding members offer their own contribution to the Passive House concept. Coillte Panel Products, provides OSB and MDF wood based panels, which are traditionally used for structural and non-structural purposes.[2] Ecological Building Systems has been the front runner of manufacturing airtight and windtight building products.[2] Martin Murray Architects provides a variety of architectural services such as, sustainable design, conservation, project management, and urban design.[2] Munster Joinery is one of the leading manufacturers in energy efficient windows and doors.[2] University of Ulster is known for teaching and widening access to education, research and innovation through technology.[2]

Principles of Passive House Building[edit | edit source]

The Passive House Principles, also known as Passiv Haus, are a precise, detailed design of building, that focus on an energy demand that is 90% lower than most buildings.[1] This concept is "based on minimizing heat losses and maximizing heat gains from the home," this is done by reducing heat loss with insulation and by making the house airtight.[3] In a video series about Passive House building, Jeff Colley, Editor of Passive House Plus stated, "many people remain unaware that it's a specific, rigorous building standard, and mistakenly use it as a short hand for energy efficient building and use of renewables."[1] Because Passive House techniques are independent of fossil fuels such as oil, coal and/or gas, they often get mistaken for being eco friendly due to that one aspect, rather they are renewable throughout the entire building process which is one of the factors in qualifying a building for passing Passive House code.[3]

Why Build Using Passive House Standards?[edit | edit source]

Spending cost is one factor. It has been figured that using the Passive House building standards increases cost by at most 20 percent and a lot of times, there is no raise in cost at all.[4] Architect, Tomas O'Leary says, "a good portion of the cost of a Passive House is actually substituting other costs."[3] Saves money in the long run. On average, a building built using the Passive House technique generates an 85 percent savings in comparison to conventional heating techniques.[3] This means that the up front investment will likely pay itself off within seven years.[3]

Passive House Projects[edit | edit source]

MosArt's Passive House, 'Out of the Blue.' Built in 2005.

Leinster Province[edit | edit source]

MosArt built its first Passive House, 'Out of the Blue' in 2005. MosArts owner, Tomas O'Leary currently resides in the home and played a large role in the houses development. O'Leary first learned about the Passive House concept at a conference in Kerry, where a Swedish architect "explained how he designed a terrace of houses without any conventional heating system."[3] When building 'Out of the Blue,' MosArt used some basic building principles to ensure the best quality. Because one of the main aspects of Passive House is building a space that is energy efficient, MosArt decided to build their house facing the road rather than the standard, which is facing the house south.[3] This was because facing the house towards the road meant excess energy production due to the sunlight.[3] Since building 'Out of the Blue,' MosArt has become a recognized authority on Passive House building.

Features Include:

  • Mechanical heat recovery ventilation system, which uses the heat from the air to heat the cold incoming air.
  • Triple-glazed windows remove heating cost that come with radiators, underfloor heating and boilers.
  • Bill for heating and hot water is 250 Euros per year.
Tesco Irelands first "eco friendly" supermarket built using the Passive House Concept.

Munster Province[edit | edit source]

Supermarket, Tesco Ireland, opened its first "eco store" in Tramore, County Waterford. This supermarket is completely built with Passive House standards and uses 45 percent less energy than supermarkets of the same size, which means that it is reducing its carbon footprint by 30 percent annually.[5] This is the first supermarket in Ireland to be built using the Passive House standards.[5]

Features include:

  • Tri-generation Combined Heat and Power Unit that will provide heat and additional electricity to the store.
  • Wooden structure with timber harvested from sustainable forests.
  • Sky lights to increase natural light.
  • Solar panels to power cash registers.
  • Carbon dioxide refrigeration system that uses 15 percent less energy than conventional refrigeration system.
  • Carbon labeling to label the stores products.
  • Motion sensitive lighting
  • Daylight control that automatically dims the lights and brightens them when needed.

References[edit | edit source]

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Authors Savanna VandenHeuvel
License CC-BY-SA-3.0
Language English (en)
Related subpages, pages link here
Impact 307 page views
Created April 4, 2014 by Savanna VandenHeuvel
Modified February 23, 2024 by Felipe Schenone
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