Friday, November 26, 2010

Passivhaus Highrise in Linz
25 Nov '10: The Power Tower: This remarkable 19 storey tower in Linz, Austria is the highest building that could be considered near to Passivhaus standard, requiring no fossil fuel burning for its energy requirements. It's designed by Kaufman and Haas.

As the PDF above says: "The new group headquarters of the Upper Austrian power utility, Energie AG Oberösterreich, is currently under construction in Linz. Known as the Power Tower, this is no ordinary office complex – even before completion, it is setting the benchmark for energy efficiency in large buildings. With its nineteen storeys, this will be the first high-rise office building in the world that uses renewable energies to meet almost its entire energy requirement for heating, cooling and fresh air."
   The tower has 46 x 150m deep boreholes for ground source heat pumps, plus it has 90x10m deep concrete piles with thermal loops. 6,900 metres in all! An inexhaustible source of energy!
   There is an immense amount of PV in the facade (700 sqm for 42,000 kWh/year). They are not using solar thermal  panels to recharge the ground with heat. They are doing some summer cooling of the office areas with water brought up from aquifer. Tall buildings generally have high internal heat gains, and these are even greater with highly insulated walls - so there is plenty of heat being put down in the summer - in a sense, the whole building is a solar thermal collector!
Media press release 2008 

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