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Solar & Energy Efficient Design
 
During the 70's we experienced an explosion of construction utilizing sunlight as a major energy source. Unfortunately the loss of the tax credits that encouraged this, a great number of over heated, over lit South facing living rooms, and a return of stable cheap oil sources served to deflate this movement during the 80's.
 
Now, however, we are experiencing a wiser and more informed renaissance of Solar building. A new generation of glazing materials and cautious design respecting the power of the sun and traditional building forms is putting a new light on how to build with the Sun. Indeed, with careful design, a solar heated building need not even face South!
 
However, the old principles of mass storage of heat, of heat loss calculation requirements, of the behavior of radiant heat, and the studied use of daylighting still must be applied to a design to obtain an accurate and comfortable fit between reduced energy requirements and building form.
 
The larger and more complex a building is, the greater is the payoff from applying these principles of solar design. Initial construction costs may be higher but this can be experienced as an actual cost reduction when seen against operating savings and reduced purchase of energy from Utilities.
 
How this is done is the subject of extensive research and specialized study. The following sources contain information on both the simplicity and the complexity of building with the sun.During the 70's we experienced an explosion of construction utilizing sunlight as a major energy source. Unfortunately the loss of the tax credits that encouraged this, a great number of over heated, over lit South facing living rooms, and a return of stable cheap oil sources served to deflate this movement during the 80's.
 
Now, however, we are experiencing a wiser and more informed renaissance of Solar building. A new generation of glazing materials and cautious design respecting the power of the sun and traditional building forms is putting a new light on how to build with the Sun. Indeed, with careful design, a solar heated building need not even face South!
 
However, the old principles of mass storage of heat, of heat loss calculation requirements, of the behavior of radiant heat, and the studied use of daylighting still must be applied to a design to obtain an accurate and comfortable fit between reduced energy requirements and building form.
 
The larger and more complex a building is, the greater is the payoff from applying these principles of solar design. Initial construction costs may be higher but this can be experienced as an actual cost reduction when seen against operating savings and reduced purchase of energy from Utilities.
 
How this is done is the subject of extensive research and specialized study. The following sources contain information on both the simplicity and the complexity of building with the sun.
 
N.C. Solar Energy Center is a research think tank for solar energy research as it pertains to building.
 
The American Solar Energy Society home page provides links to other solar related sites.
 
Daybreak Technologies provides cutting edge sustainable building design, research, consulting and engineering products and services for Architects, product manufacturers, facilities managers, builders, and government agencies.
 
Sustainable Buildings Industry Council provides a good industry based description of the benefits of using passive solar strageties. SBIC also provides software and training for energy efficient building stragegies.
 
Building Environmental Science and Technology (B.E.S.T.) is a site devoted to providing information and consulting services on resource efficient technology.
 

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