Designed as the world’s first Active House, “Home for Life” is the first experiment from Velux series of sustainable architecture solutions- Model Home 2020 and was inaugurated in April 2009 in Aarchus, Denmark. Single family house of 200 sqm, ground floor and attic height, is designed to minimize energy consumption and operating results to provide indoor climate with a high level of comfort. Since July 2009, a family of four moved in the house to live for a year, monitoring in an objective and subjective way the efficacy of the different elements of the project. AART Architects were positioned the house so that the field house roof orientation allow optimal use of solar panels. Because glass surfaces (vertical windows and attic windows) totaling approx. 40% of the useful, the need for artificial lighting during the day space drops to near zero. The attic windows ensure adequate insulation, fitted with interior blinds to avoid too strong sunshine, and the outer coils to stop the sun and avoid overheating in summer. Each room has a proper natural ventilation during summer, controlled by an intelligent system that replaces the need for air conditioning.
Domestic water heating is done with solar panels mounted on the covers, and space heating is provided by a heat pump – an ecological system that replaces the traditional combustion of fossil fuels. Renewable energy and without carbon emissions produced by the heat pump, solar panels and photovoltaic cells exceed the 9.4% estimated energy consumption for housing, which equates to 30 years in energy recovery and construction materials used to produce the house. Structure, closing and the divisions of laminated wood and metal profiles have been produced and put into operation which consumes fewer resources than traditional masonry, being entirely recyclable. Architectural image is one of the main strengths of this project. “Home for life” demonstrates how can be integrated effectively the cutting-edge technology components into a unitary concept, both traditional and modern.
White used for finishing walls and sloping surfaces allows diffusion and light distribution on the inside. In the absence of various finishes, architectural image is animated by the composition of panels and ladders. Information gathered from the experiment on the impact of building on the environment, health and lifestyle of its inhabitants, is a basis for future technological innovations designed to improve the quality of life and long term environment recovery.
Photos: © Michael Franke Photography.
Photos: Adam Mørk
Project: Research and design development aimed at ensruing a necessary foothold in architecture in an anticipated sustainable and low-carbon future.
Developer: VELFAC A/S; VELUX A/S
Architect and landscape architect: AART architects A/S
Engineer: Esbensen Consulting Engineers
Address: Lystrup near Aarhus
Size: 200 sq.m.
For those interested in more information about sustainable architecture solutions, visit: Velux.