Towards Net Zero: An Analysis of Building Orientation in the Reduction of Energy Load Requirements in High Latitudes

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Barrett, Jeffrey

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University of Guelph


A net-zero energy community localizes its energy creation and distribution. Such a community does not rely on outside influences to power itself. Further, through new design techniques, at both the individual home and neighbourhood scale, the load requirements needed to power itself can be significantly reduced, while increasing the comfort level of living in an extreme environment. These elements would have profound effects in the improvements of the well being of communities in high latitudes. This paper is an investigation of what the literature deemed to be the most effective means of achieving a net zero community: reduction of a building’s energy load. Specifically it focuses on the effects of passive solar and uses simulation modeling to measure the effects that building orientation has in the reduction of energy load requirements in high latitudes. The results indicate that orientation does effect a building’s energy load reductions especially in newer, better-insulated homes. However, it was shown to be relatively minimal from a cost savings perspective.



Energy-modeling, building orientation in high latitudes, net-zero communities