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25 Years Passive House – Interview with Dr. Wolfgang Feist

"Don't be talked into expensive upgrades"

The kids were excited – construction meant action! The grandparents were sceptial but supportive. Some experts had however published papers, stating that Passive House could never work. Wolfgang Feist was not deterred: "That you could make a home more energy efficient, it was immediately clear." He also knew that he didn't want to be considered "exotic" in the long-term: "exotics have passing value." The Passive House pioneer has reached both goals.

Download Interview ( pdf 1,7 MB)

About Passive House - What is a Passive House?

Passive House is a building standard that is truly energy efficient, comfortable and affordable at the same time.

Passive House is not a brand name, but a tried and true construction concept that can be applied by anyone, anywhere.

Yet, a Passive House is more than just a low-energy building:

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Passive House – building for energy efficiency, comfort and affordability
Typical heating systems in Central Europe, where the Passive House Standard was first developed and applied, are centralised hot water heating systems consisting of radiators, pipes and central oil or gas boilers. The average heating load of standard buildings in this area is approximately 100 W/m² (approx. 10 kW for a 100 m² apartment). The Passive House concept is based on the goal of reducing heat losses to an absolute minimum, thus rendering large heating systems unnecessary (see image 1). With peak heating loads below 10 W per square meter of living area, the low remaining heat demand can be delivered via the supply air by a post heating coil (see box below). A building that does not require any heating system other than post air heating is called a Passive House; no traditional heating (or cooling) systems are needed.

Passive Houses around the world
The Passive House concept itself remains the same for all of the world’s climates, as does the physics behind it. Yet while Passive House principles remain the same across the world, the details do have to be adapted to the specific climate at hand. A building fulfilling the Passive House Standard will look much different in Alaska than in Zimbabwe.

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