Philosophy, ideals and research

 These were the design concepts that I considered:-

  • Very low energy use, lower than a Passive House or Code 6 Code for Sustainable Homes.
  • Maximise solar contribution to water heating using the inevitably excess of heated water to charge up an interseasonal thermal store
  • Build tight and ventilate right
  • Heavyweight construction – maximise the ability to store solar gains and minimise temperature fluctuations
  • High comfort – very low energy demand
  • Triple glazed windows
  • Mitigation of thermal bridging by design
  • Nuts and bolts


These are the ideals I hope to achieve for my house:-

  • No heating system
  • Comfortable to live in and low maintainence
  • Achieve very airtight construction
  • Use recycled agregrate blocks
  • Recycle rainwater for flushing WC’s and outside tap
  • To pay as few fees or costs for certification as possible
  • Monitor house energy use and temperatures
  • Not to have any polluting energy appliances in the house
  • To provide a life time quality home for myself and my wife
  • To involve myself fully in the project 


  • Much research has been carried out by wide reading:-
  • Solar Heating Systems for Houses — Werner Weiss & Details for Passive Houses.
  • Consultation with the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT).
  • Reading and discussing on the Green Building Forum has been a great help and I would like to thank all those who have inputted via that route.
  • My research began in 1978 with a visit to the Saskatchewan Conservation House. It is sad to read their report produced in 1977 and realise how little progress we have made since then. They had an evacuated tube solar panel back then and had them at an angle of 70 degrees!!! see more here