Mar 25, 2010

Engineering "Certified Building Tour"

At 2 pm yesterday, we had a meeting for a tour through the "Epicenter" a house which is owned by the group "Artists for Humanity" and it is a warehouse. The Epicenter is the only LEED (Leadership and Environmental Design) Platinum certified building in Boston. The tour guide, showed us the advances of the house compared to a normal house.The walls aren't made up of stone, they are made of metal, wood and foam. The walls had an extra layer of foam, which keeps the metal warm in the winter and cold in the summer.The metal support didn't touch the walls, so the layer of air wouldn't let heat transfer. For designing of the inside, they used old recycled car windows for guard rail.
The house doesn't has a air condition, they use a innovating but simple system to maintain the building in the perfect conditions. From 2am to 6am they create an airflow by opening both sides of the building, here is where the insulated walls play their role.
The cooling system is not the only thing that gave this building the platinum certificate. On the roof we can find 159 solar panels, that take care of more than 50% of the energy used per day. Engineers placed these panels 3 feet of the roof, in order for them to work at the 100%.
We also learned that they count with a water recollection system.The roof is slightly bend towards the center where a pipe goes all the way to the basement, to fill up a cistern and allows the owners to use this water, for cleaning, bathrooms and even in their art.
Another major saving for the building is the light. They use as much natural light as they can by implementing many big windows. But the house has just windows on the south and north side.

1 comment:

Hans Mundahl said...

Nice post - the pictures really add to the story!