There are some significant benefits to be gained when consideration is given to the passive solar aspects of home design, either in new construction or for a renovation on your existing home. These benign features work to provide increased occupant comfort in both winter and summer, don't require additional maintenance, and can be attractively incorporated into almost any design. Nexus Solar would be happy to provide consultation services of any detail to anyone considering passive solar design in their home.

Listed below are some of the features we designed into our monitoring project, the Southfield Envirohome.

An open floor plan promotes air circulation and interiors that are all daylit.

Motion detector switches turn lights off automatically when no one is in the room. They can be programmed to turn off automatically anywhere from seconds to up to 30 minutes after activity.

Interior fireplace provides extra warmth and comfort without heating the whole house.

Heat retentive (dark or hard) flooring, like a battery, stores daytime heat for evening warmth.

Energy efficient window shades have an insulating, honeycomb structure that keeps south-facing rooms cooler in summer and warmer in winter.

Generous south facing windows bring in winter warmth and light.

Outdoor sunspace, with 2 sides of shelter, heat-absorbing concrete floor and brick walls, and southwest exposure, holds heat through ‘till evening in spring, thus extending the outdoor patio season.

Use of glass blocks brings natural daylight into interior rooms, improving ambience and reducing electricity consumption.

Clerestory windows bring daylight deep into the home’s interior, providing superior natural light everywhere and providing excellent warm-weather ventilation.

Morning light enters the master suite and walk-in-closet through strategically placed windows and interior glass block.

Cold storage of seasonal produce and year round items offsets use of refrigeration. If it offsets the need to run a second refrigerator in the home, approximately 308kg CO2 worth of electricity can be saved annually.

A ventilating skylight provides natural air conditioning in summer, and exceptionally bright north rooms.

By extending the roof overhang by an additional 1 foot (to 2 feet), this south facing window is shaded by noon in summer.

©2006 Nexus Solar Corporation