News

Welsh social housing to embrace passive house, timber & life cycle assessment

Welsh social housing to embrace passive house, timber & life cycle assessment

The Welsh government has issued a new standard for social housing that requires an embodied carbon assessment, favours timber-based offsite construction, and bans fossil fuel boilers.

General

UK sustainable building groups become UN centres of excellence

UK sustainable building groups become UN centres of excellence

At COP26, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) recognised the UK’s Sustainable Development Foundation (SDF), along with South West College in Northern Ireland and the Construction Innovation Scotland Centre, as international centres of excellence for high performance buildings.

Large Buildings

Poor ventilation a Covid risk in 40 per cent of classrooms, study finds

Poor ventilation a Covid risk in 40 per cent of classrooms, study finds

Coventry University research has found that 40 per cent of primary school classrooms examined in a study did not have an adequate ventilation rate to combat the spread of Covid-19.

Ventilation

COP26 house to showcase fabric first, low carbon build methods

COP26 house to showcase fabric first, low carbon build methods

A new demonstration house currently being erected in Glasgow in advance of this year’s COP26 climate conference will showcase build systems and methods for achieving zero carbon housing to the world.

Events

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Marketplace

Ecocel supplying English developer Bell Blue

Ecocel supplying English developer Bell Blue

Cork-based cellulose insulation manufacturer Ecocel is now supplying its blown cellulose insulation to English developer Bell Blue.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Viessmann expands its electric heating range

Viessmann expands its electric heating range

Viessmann has launched a range of electric heating products to the UK to complement its established line of heat pumps.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Ecomerchant now stocking Herschel Infrared heating products

Ecomerchant now stocking Herschel Infrared heating products

Leading sustainable building product supplier Ecomerchant is now supplying Herschel Infrared heating panels, and Ecomerchant’s Will Kirkman says they are an ideal heating solution for passive house projects.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

ECD Architects recruiting for new English office

ECD Architects recruiting for new English office

ECD Architects, based in London and Glasgow and established in 1980, is planning to open an office in the north west of England later this year, and is now advertising for several new roles.

18-01-2022 Marketplace

Blogs

Why the Green Homes Grant failed

Why the Green Homes Grant failed

The Green Homes Grant scheme failed because politicians failed to heed more than a decade of lessons about how to do retrofit well, writes Dr Peter Rickaby, and now there will be an even bigger hill to climb.

Blogs

On the 3D printing of buildings

On the 3D printing of buildings

Building physics expert Toby Cambray finds himself unconvinced by the merits of a new home in the Netherlands that has been 3D printed with concrete.

Blogs

The emergence of thermal bridging & thermal bypass

The emergence of thermal bridging & thermal bypass

In his latest column, Dr Marc Ó Riain takes a look back at the some of the first projects to address the phenomena of thermal bridging and thermal bypass in buildings.

Blogs

Measuring humidity, the old school way

Measuring humidity, the old school way

A chance purchase on eBay leads buildings physics expert Toby Cambray to admire the aesthetics and mechanics of old scientific instruments.

Blogs

Shooting the moon

Shooting the moon

The concept of building back better and greener, popular early in the pandemic, is now in danger of being abandoned in the rush to return to ‘normal’ — but we always have the power to shape what normal is, writes Dr Peter Rickaby.

Blogs

1970s Arkansas & Illinois prototypes: progress towards passive house

1970s Arkansas & Illinois prototypes: progress towards passive house

In his latest column, Dr Marc O’Riain looks back at two American prototypes for the passive house standard that embraced heat pump technology as well as principles of superinsulation and airtightness.

Blogs

Is Enerphit the key to decarbonising existing homes?

Is Enerphit the key to decarbonising existing homes?

With increasing attention turning to cutting carbon emissions from existing homes to meet carbon reduction targets, Duncan Smith, housing asset and energy strategy manager at Renfrewshire County Council in Scotland, argues that approaches which improve comfort and dramatically reduce energy bills must be front and centre.

Blogs

Do your walls behave like a Jaffa Cake?

Do your walls behave like a Jaffa Cake?

Toby Cambray writes on the many lessons that the inimitable biscuit cake can teach us about how building materials deal with moisture.

Blogs

COP 26 & the future of the Glasgow tenements

COP 26 & the future of the Glasgow tenements

Duncan Smith reflects on the social and architectural significance of Glasgow's tenement flats, and their potential place in a zero carbon future, as the city prepares to host COP 26. 

Blogs

Green Homes Grants: where did it go wrong, and what comes next?

Green Homes Grants: where did it go wrong, and what comes next?

The Green Homes Grant scheme failed because politicians failed to heed more than a decade of lessons about how to do retrofit well, writes Dr Peter Rickaby, and now there will be an even bigger hill to climb. 

Blogs

The condensation myth

The condensation myth

Condensation within the structure of buildings is a lot more complex than condensation in a sweaty pub on a Friday night, writes building physics expert Toby Cambray.

Blogs

Will we really build back better?

Will we really build back better?

As governments rush to jump-start their economies, there is a danger that important lessons for how to retrofit homes will be lost in the rush to build. But there is a better way, writes Dr Peter Rickaby.

Blogs

The PH+ guides

The PH+ guide to insulating foundations

The PH+ guide to insulating foundations

While understanding wall and roof insulation is relatively straightforward, insulation under the ground floor can be a bit of a mystery by comparison. Not only is it buried in the ground, but there are notoriously tricky spots like the wall-floor junction that need to be detailed and insulated properly. And the design of your foundation often depends on site conditions and the type of structure you’re going to build, too. In this guide, we explain some different ways of insulating one of the most challenging parts of the building envelope.

10-06-2019 Guides

The PH+ guide to overheating

The PH+ guide to overheating

As awareness of the urgency of the climate crisis grows, efforts to kickstart en masse deep energy efficiency interventions are gathering apace. But poorly conceived low energy building efforts can lead to unintended consequences including overheating – a risk that’s bound to grow as the world warms up. Phi Architecture co-founder Claire Jamieson details the risks and offers some solutions on how to create low energy buildings that are comfortable in summer and winter.

09-04-2021 Guides

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Timber frame & mass timber: the Passive House Plus guide to structural timber construction

Fuelled by the need to build quickly and to increasingly tight sustainability standards, the market for timber frame and mass timber construction is growing rapidly. This detailed guide covers many of the main established and emerging techniques, and looks at key issues to address if you’re considering a timber-based build.

05-07-2019 Guides

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

The PH+ guide to insulating concrete formwork

As demand for super-insulated and airtight building structures grows, insulating concrete formwork (ICF) is rapidly gaining popularity as a method of construction. But what exactly is ICF, what are its key advantages, and why is it so well suited to passive house and low energy construction?

16-10-2018 Guides