The project is located on a hilltop in Ramona, California, where temperatures are sometimes below freezing in the winter and often in excess of 100-degrees in the summer. This desert-like climate called for a solution that would include high insulation and an air-tight envelope. A heat recovery ventilation system provides optimal indoor air quality and maintains thermal efficiency.
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The most impressive aspect of the home is the sophisticated energy system, which is expected to eventually take the home off-grid. Currently, the house generatesrenewable energyand runs off a battery system, utilizing the grid only for back-up energy. Its prominent location is one of the best sites in San Diego County for harvesting wind-generated energy. A 2.3 kW, 17-foot high wind turbine was installed on a hill just above the home and is expected to generate energy almost every day in a year for a minimum of 12 hours a day. Large dual-axis trackers outfitted with 24 solar panels are expected to produce the bulk of the energy produced on site-around 44,000 kWh per year.
Related: 6 Solar-Powered Homes to Watch at the Solar Decathlon 2013 Competition in Irvine, CA
Inside the house, various energy-efficient appliances such as an induction cooktop and a heat pump dryer ensure a lower than average energy consumption. High-efficacy LED lighting is used throughout, with several control and monitoring systems providing data for energy use and generation, as well as water resource levels and water consumption.
+ Alliance Green Builder
+ Casa Aquila
Photos via KNB Associates