This case study describes a set of single and double family houses built in Greenland in first half of 20th century. First type is 18D (single and double family house) and second is Tuapannguanut (alias “Lego” row houses). These single and double family houses were build with inadequate insulation, lacking air tightness and also no ventilation system. This case study lists a set of documents about what is the situation in these houses (including indoor climate and energy renovation), proposal how to “wrap up” the buildings in extra layer of insulation including super air tight layer, design of efficient ventilation system in a limited space and extensive monitoring system.
October 2010. Master thesis by Martina Marencokova and Lise Nygaard Jensen is an excellent work on survey of the situation and energy-renovation proposal in housing in Greenland. The work gives a detailed overview of buildings from 1957-1963 and describes their current situation based on extensive measurements (blower door, thermography, indoor air quality measurements, etc) and also proposes a very advanced level of retrofitting including increasing of insulation and air tightness levels and installing of energy-efficient ventilation system. Find more information about different types of standard houses in Greenland, including type 18D.
October 2012. Read an interesting report by Berna, T. & Müller, S., students from DTU about how to theoretically install the system and what else is needed. Typehouse 18D is one of the most common double family houses build in Greenland. These houses are in serious need of renovation, i.e. extra insulation with airtight layer, changing windows and also installing ventilation system.
November 2012. Conference paper by Petra Vladykova Bednarova and Soren P. Bjarlov about energy renovation of a Greenlandic house type 18D. This paper is based on the developed theoretical practice of super-insulation solution for renovation of exiting standard wooden houses in Greenland built from 1950s until 2006, more than half the building stock in Arctic Greenland. From various perspectives, the wrap-up system is evaluated as a robust building renovation method with focus on applying the membrane for air tightness with a minimum of risk of leakage, high level of insulation with very few thermal bridges, focus on fire protection by using insulation material of mineral wool and high attention on solving details in the building envelope. This interesting wrap-up and package solution can easily be applied to many standard wooden houses in Greenland, but also to wooden houses across the Arctic regions. Linking all these aspects lead to interesting findings about high energy savings, reduction of oil usage and decrease of greenhouse gas emissions in retrofitting of Arctic buildings.
August 2015. Report by Martin Kotol about installation and performance of a mechanical ventilation unit in a Greenlandic house Tuapannguanut. Winters in the Arctic are very cold and long. When the temperatures are so low, the occupants of Arctic dwellings stop opening windows to avoid cold draught. Any natural vents get typically sealed for the same reason. This, together with the lack of mechanical ventilation results in insufficient air change in majority of the dwellings. Consequently the indoor air quality (IAQ) becomes rather poor which has a negative effect on the occupants’ health and may also damage the construction due to mold growth. In this project a state of the art ventilation unit was installed in an old house to study its performance and any changes of the IAQ. The measurements have shown that the IAQ had improved significantly. Also the occupants have reported significant increase in their comfort. The initial costs of the installation would pay off in approximately 14 years thanks to the heat recovery. All in all the installation of the mechanical ventilation had proved to be an efficient yet economical solution to an actual indoor air quality problem in Greenland.
Energy-efficient building in Greenland: investigation of the energy consumption and indoor climate” (link here)
2015. Article by Katarzyna M. Luca, Martin Kotol and Tove Ladinga published at the 8th International Cold Climate HVAC 2015 Conference. Increasing the insulation layer and using the mechanical ventilation system with heat recovery allows a decrease in the energy consumption for space heating by about 45%. However, the design heat load in the energy-efficient building is only slightly lower than in the standard one. Significant part of the reduced energy consumption comes from the heat recovered in the ventilation system. The investments are also economically justified, especially taking into account the uncertainties concerning future oil prices in Greenland. In both models there is a risk of overheating. In residential buildings it can be mitigated by opening the windows, but in buildings where it is not possible additional counter-measures should be taken.
Images by Martina Marencokova, Martin Kotol and www.ini.gl