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Gillies Hall, at Monash’s Peninsula Campus, is Australia’s largest Passivhaus building and a significant project for Monash University as it moves to deliver on the ambitious Net Zero initiative. The new student residence is home to (...)
The armed conflict that has persisted for decades in the Karen State of Myanmar results in a daily flow of refugees and immigrants to neighboring Thailand. In the Thai town of Mae Sot, a few kilometers from the Burmese border, numero (...)
- Bio-based and recycled materials
Our choices were on the wooden frame, the insulating infill in straw bales, the thermal inertia contribution in mud bricks, the insulation of the cellulose wadding roof.
- Renewable energies
The building is powered by the wood boiler on the site of the agricultural college. The photovoltaic system, small capacity because the great intrinsic performance of the building requires very little compensation, and the small wind turbine inserted in the roof, produce electricity.
- Zero energy building
True to its DNA, the design team has addressed the issue of positive energy through a drastic process of reducing the need for energy before requiring the implementation of complex, expensive and polluting technological solutions.
This approach is completed in the second place by natural ventilation devices, geothermal (climatic well used in the summer to passively cool the building, winter to preheat the fresh air), heat recovery on greywater (in the showers). Electricity is produced by a wind turbine and photovoltaic panels. Rainwater is collected in two large underground tanks to feed flushing toilets in the toilets and water the green spaces.
- Health and comfort
The hygrothermal comfort conditions have been greatly improved compared to conventional constructions, by exploiting the properties of natural materials. The straw offers an excellent phase shift and thermal damping: indeed only about 5% of the solar heat wave passes through the straw bale, and arrives inside with a phase shift of 10 hours. In addition, the straw and the raw earth regulate the humidity in the interior air thanks to their properties (nature of the fibers and microstructure of the ground). Finally, neither of them diffuse pollutants into the indoor air.
- Low carbon
Bioclimatic architecture and natural matter (wood, straw, lime, raw earth) are at the heart of our approach to positive energy. The massive use of wood and straw, both storing carbon, strongly favors the reduction of the project footprint. The contribution of inertia by uncooked mineral matter (raw earth) logically complements our overall approach.