While solar energy is often associated with passive homes, it isn’t for the reasons that you might think. You can read more about this in our How to Solar Power Your House post from June 2016.
In real terms, a passive house will use under 15 kWh per square metre, per year. The EkoBuilt Model Home will make use of a 6kW solar array to meet its total energy needs for roughly six months/year.
EkoBuilt’s demonstration passive house just west of Ottawa in McNab-Braeside will have a small companion solar installation to cover its total energy needs (this includes energy to power a water heater, the heating/cooling system, and of course general lights/electricity use):
- the 2,509 sq ft home is designed to be powered by Aquion batteries**
- the batteries are powered by a 6 kW solar array with Hanwha Q cell panels
- for the 3 to 4 months per year where extra power generation is needed (in our eastern Ontario winter), a vegetable oil generator will be used to assist in charging batteries. For details, read this article on Treehugger, Generating inexpensive power from waste vegetable oil.
For all of the details, you can download these one-page info sheets that we’ve prepared:
If you have questions or would simply like to learn more about how a very modest solar installation could help with your home building project, please feel free to get in touch.
Sept 2017 Note: The Aquion salt water batteries used by the EkoModel Home are still an option, but the company recently changed ownership, and we’ve been advised that new units won’t be available until spring 2018.