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Solar Architecture and Green Building


Bernheim Arboretum Visitors Center

The visitor center at the Bernheim Arboretum in Clairmont, Kentucky, is a simple post-and-beam structure of reclaimed and sustainably harvested woods—including cypress planks salvaged from pickle barrels—echoes the rhythms of the trees and frames views of the surroundings. Like the forest of which it’s a part, the building captures light, water, and air to the benefit of the surrounding landscape. Much of the roof is vegetated, producing oxygen and absorbing rainwater. Photovoltaics produce energy on site. Ponds collect rainwater for reuse and provide visual, acoustic, and thermal comfort. Geothermal heating and cooling creates a quiet environment and connects the building to the earth.  ©2009 William McDonough + Partners




Bernheim Arboretum Building Mimics Tree (USA)

"The Bernheim Visitor Center represented a magical opportunity; a chance to design a building like a tree. Made up of biological and technical 'nutrients' the building exemplifies the Cradle to Cradle approach to design. Imagine a building like a ...more


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Parasol (Sweden)

ParaSol is a user-friendly energy simulation tool for comparison of energy demand, and peak loads for heating / cooling for different glazing and ...more


National Climatic Data Center (USA)

NCDC is the world's largest active archive of weather data. NCDC produces numerous climate publications and responds to data requests from all ...more


Solar Calculator (USA)

Use our solar power calculator to estimate the cost and size of a solar energy project in your area. This should only be used as a rough estimate, ...more


Solar Radiation Data Manual for Buildings

This manual provides solar radiation and illuminance values for a horizontal window and four vertical windows (facing north, east, south, and ...more


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Pittsburgh Garden Trail (USA)

The collection of seven urban garden locations on the Pittsburgh Garden Trail gives visitors a chance to see the city in new and unexpected ways. ...more


Zero Energy Building Certification (USA)

The Zero Energy Building Certification is offered after a project submits 12 consecutive months of net-zero-energy performance data. The program ...more


Living Building Case Studies

These case studies describe projects that have been certified as Living Buildings or Zero Energy Buildings., both of which require 12 months of ...more


Underwood Solar Future (Pittsburgh, USA)

Underwood Solar Future provides full-service solar panel estimating and installation for commercial businesses and residential properties at fair ...more


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