Energy Efficiency / back

As the world and continent that has a population that is growing at an alarming rate there is a real need to consider how we use electrical energy in buildings. Energy is used daily for lighting, heating, cooling, cooking, working & entertainment in the different buildings we occupy daily. The more energy efficient buildings we design as Architectural professionals we can have a better living & working environment and we could save on the natural resources were this energy is sourced.

As professionals we received training and accreditation for over five years now & we continue to learn of other ways to design and implement energy efficient buildings. We focus on the following main areas to meet SANS 10400 XA & 204 regulations.

 

  • BUILDING ORIENTATION – One of the very first items we look at when designing a building is it’s orientation & natural shading. A great orientation will assist all items below to function well and minimise the use of energy for a comfortable building.

 

  • WALLS – The thickness of the walls, orientation, cavity & insulation will create a space that will transfer heat between inside and outside of a building and therefore being more efficient.

 

  • FLOORS – adding insulation between the ground and floor slabs will reduce the heat that is lost through the ground. (This is more specific to luxury homes with in floor heating)
  • FENESTRATION – All glazing panels must be of a quality that they minimise air leakage & transfer of heat.

 

  • ROOFS – an addition of insulation to concrete or gable roof will improve the loss or gaining of heat through the largest area exposed to the elements in a building.

 

  • HOT WATER HEATING – The heating of water under the African skies can easily be achieved mostly by the FREE power of the Sun either by solar panels or heat pumps. (Other methods can be applied depending on type of building)

 

  • LIGHTING – The use of more energy efficient lighting and the consultation of lighting experts will reduce consumption on items that are either kept on for 6 to 12 hours in most buildings.There other areas that we look at as we design energy efficient buildings and we implement on a project basis i.e. grey water system, rain water harvesting, gas fireplace & stoves, photo-voltaic panels and energy storage, off grid design, A star rated appliances and others.