Energy Vanguard Blog

7 Things I Learned at the North American Passive House Conference

Posted by Allison Bailes on Mon, Sep 26, 2016

Yesterday I returned home from the North American Passive House Conference. It was great, as it always is. Wait. No, this was the best one yet. On the 10th anniversary of the first conference, PHIUS put on an amazing conference. It was the biggest one ever, I believe. As I flew home I pondered some of the things I heard and saw in Philadelphia and here are few that stood out for me.

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Tags: fun, conferences, Passive House

3 Cool Products I Saw at the Passive House Conference in NYC

Posted by Allison Bailes on Fri, Jul 22, 2016

Last month I attended the conference of the North American Passive House Network in New York City. They had a really nice trade show, and I got to spend some time talking to the vendors. It's always nice to see what's going at these events because I'm starting to come around to Joe Lstiburek's way of thinking. At the 2013 Building Science Summer Camp, he said, "Passive House is the only place where real innovation is happening."

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Tags: conferences, ventilation

Increasing Diversity at the Best Home Performance Conference

Posted by Allison Bailes on Mon, Jan 18, 2016

I love the ACI National Home Performance Conference and Trade Show. It's one of my favorite events of the year. From the first time I attended in 2005, I knew this conference was special. It's a great place to learn what your peers are doing in other parts of the country. It's a great place to meet the experts. And it's a great place to hear the latest news in building science and home performance. And now the organizers have a new tool to open it up.

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Tags: fun, conferences

4 Passive House Conference Talks I Can't Wait to Hear

Posted by Allison Bailes on Fri, Aug 28, 2015

The 10th annual North American Passive House Conference is just around the corner. It's in Chicago this year, a nice central location and also where the headquarters of the Passive House Institute US is located. I really enjoy this conference and always get to hear some high level talks there. Looking over the agenda for this year's conference, these are the presentations I'm most looking forward to.

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Tags: conferences

The Secret to Moving Air Efficiently through Your Duct System

Posted by Allison Bailes on Thu, Aug 20, 2015

At my first Building Science Summer Camp in 2011, David Hill (in the photo below) gave a great presentation on some of the big problems with duct systems. (In case you weren’t reading this blog back then, I got myself invited with my 2010 article called I Don't Need No Stinkin' Building Science Summer Camp.) Michael Chandler ably summarized that talk in his article, Stuff I Learned at Joe Lstiburek’s House, Part 2. This year, Hill did a followup presentation, reprising some of his main points but also adding two new pieces, one of which is a nice study he's been involved with on air flow in oval ducts.

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Tags: conferences, heating & cooling distribution

Nest Thermostat Data Unveiled at ACI Conference

Posted by Allison Bailes on Tue, May 12, 2015

The Nest thermostat has been around since October 2011, quietly collecting data on how your home — and the homes of hundreds of thousands of your neighbors — operates. It gathers information about indoor temperature, relative humidity, air conditioner runtime, auxiliary heat operation for heat pumps, and much more. Unlike the Ecobee thermostat, however, Nest doesn't let its owners see all those data (which is a problem only for energy geeks really). Enter Michael Blasnik.

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Tags: conferences, heating & cooling

Why Did the Chicken Go to the ACI Conference?

Posted by Allison Bailes on Mon, May 11, 2015

I love the ACI National Home Performance Conference! This year's conference was spectacular. It was in New Orleans, which is always fun. The stars of home performance were there. The Californians came back. (That's one of them in the chicken costume below. ACI after dark, which even has its own Twitter handle, @ACIafterdark, is fun no matter where the conference is, but wild things can happen in NOLA.) And perhaps best of all, Michael Blasnik revealed data from the Nest thermostat for the first time.

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Tags: conferences

An Interview with Terry Brennan — a Building Science Pioneer

Posted by Allison Bailes on Wed, Apr 15, 2015

Last week I got a chance to sit down and talk with Terry Brennan in Dallas at the Air Barrier Association of America’s annual conference. He may not be as famous as Joe Lstiburek, but he’s every bit the building science pioneer. Armed with a physics degree, the ASHRAE Handbook of Fundamentals, and a desire to reduce the environmental impact of buildings, he built houses and wrote energy modeling computer programs back in the 1970s and ‘80s. When he finally met Lstiburek in the early ‘80s, he learned not to bet against Joe’s ability to do ridiculous things. Read the transcript of our conversation and find out what that bet was and more.

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Tags: conferences, insulation, air leakage, environment & sustainability

7 Reasons to Go to the ACI National Home Performance Conference

Posted by Allison Bailes on Fri, Apr 3, 2015

The ACI National Home Performance Conference is only a month away. Even more important, the deadline to get the Early Bird rate on the registration fee is Monday, 6 April. If you work on homes, this conference is for you. Here are 7 reasons why.

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Tags: fun, education, conferences

A Year Full of Building Science Conferences

Posted by Allison Bailes on Fri, Jan 23, 2015

I love going to conferences. Since I changed my career in 2004, I've gone to building science, green building, and home performance conferences nearly every year. (I think I missed 2006, but I had a lot going on then.) Last year I went to eleven of them, but then I'm a bit unusual.1 You certainly don't have to go to that many, but if you're a home builder, home performance contractor, or home energy pro, I do recommend going to one a year so you can keep up with the latest trends, talk to your peers, and maybe add some arrows to your quiver.

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Tags: conferences