On October 2014, we were asked to choose on of the seven selections of the co-lab project as an addition to our module.
Zero carbon was one of the project that started to interest me the most. Thinking of the benefit that i will gain from the project, this study will be able to help me enhance my design practice in the future. And i choose zero carbon.
There were 7 BA students and 3 MArch students in total. We started our first class by learning the newly introduced software, Virtual Environment. Virtual environment is a software that helps embracing the architectural responsibility for good sustainable design practice. Our coordinator is Professor Lubo Jankovic, and was helped by the additional tutor (MA students)
We had a software tutorial class once a week every Friday from 2pm to 3pm. During our first few weeks we started to learn on how to creates a 3d model, adding openings and setting up locations for the buildings. On the later weeks, we started to get into more details of the project. We get introduced to the building templates manager, learn on creating the heating and cooling profile data, modifying the thermal conditions and learning on how to assign all the data changes to the existing buildings, so the changes made and the actual building information syncs.
We had our first project presentations in a group of 3 explaining what have we been learning for the past few weeks.
After few weeks of the software tutorial, we were assigned to do a project entitled the Victorian House. Our task is to analyze the amount of carbon emission produce of the house and reduce it to zero carbon.
The process started by applying what we have learn from the software lessons before. We started by modifying the buildings fabrics parts by parts. As an example, we started off with the external walls and start analyzing which materials produce the most CO ² and try to replace the material with more efficient material. We add insulation, changing the thickness of material, changing the resistance, until we reduce and achieved the number of u-value that we desired.
We also did light analysis on the house showing which parts of the house received light the most and which part will be darker. The lower the number of lux in the house means the lower the lights. Some changes were also made for the house lighting types. The existence lighting type supposed to be tungsten light and was replaced by the LED light, the fluorescent.
The number of carbon emission of the Victorian House start reducing slowly. More changes were made on the buildings, the air changes, the renewable fuels, the roof types and the openings moderation.
By the end of the project we managed to reduced the number of carbon emissions produced by the house to -206kgCO ²
To concludes,the zero carbon house is possible to achieved using a the virtual environment software, by carefully making alterations to the building fabrics. This project helps encouraging us not to only design a better building for the occupants in the future but also a better buildings for the environment as well.