Comfort: In order to achieve a good level of comfort, a proper balance between transparent and opaque parts was necessary, ensuring the maximum inflow of natural light.

The installation of wide windows and transparent door by Internorm allows an excellent level of diffuse illumination by decreasing the use of the artificial light, as well as ensuring an interesting views of the surrounding environment. Moreover, the high thermal performance certificed by Internorm, leads to a significant decreasing of the energy loss by transmission, with a significant reduction of the energy needs for heating and cooling.

The shading of the interior spaces is also guaranteed by the cantilevering roof that, with a surface of 36 m2, protects the exposed facades from the direct sunlight. In the middle of the roof, a wide roof window by Velux was installed in order to increase the quality of the light inside the building. The window can be totally opened and shaded during the summer months in order to activate a natural ventilation, and totally closed during the wintertime.


Energy: The shape of the building, as well as the orientation and the percentage of transparent parts, was modelled in order to optimize the energy balance during the seasons. The envelope was designed according to the “fabric first” principle, adopting innovative and energy-efficient technical solutions.

A lightweight dry wood-based construction system was adopted in order to ensure the rapidity of the construction and minimize the load on the basement.

Moreover, a lightweight load bearing structure can be easily disconnected at the end of the building service life and reassembled for a new life in other sites. The massive CLT panels adopted to realize the walls and the flat roof, provide the thermal capacity to minimize the overheating during the summer. Moreover, a multilayer reflective insulation produced by Actis was installed internally in order to increase the capacity to store the energy during the winter. Only in the roof, considering the high exposition to the solar radiation during the summer period, an additional reflective insulation layer was installed outside, before the ventilated air gap.


A suspending ceiling with mineral insulation panels and perforated gypsum plasterboards by Knauf increases the energy performance of the roof, as well as the acoustic quality of the space. The airtightness and the vapor control is ensured by the Rothoblaas membranes, which were installed on the both sides of the timber structure.


Environment: The shape of the building is relatively simple: a cube with a floor area of about 12.5 m2 and a volume of roughly 37 m3. The structure was totally realized with wood using CLT panels, which were assembled and connected on site on the existing concrete basement. Basically, the structure was designed to be modular and replicable through the aggregation of several units, able to generate spaces of various sizes. Moreover, the module was designed to be adaptable to different contexts (surroundings, climate, availability of solar energy, etc.). The internal space is flexible in order to change the internal layout on the based of the expected activities (office, study area, exhibition space, retail, etc.).


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KalaHouse- Passive ECO-Friendly Zero-Energy Smart House for Active Life
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