‘GRoW Home’ is low energy living teaching tool at University at Buffalo

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The GRoW Home at the University at Buffalo was designed and built by hundreds of students. It’s an efficient home that puts out 1.3 times the energy it uses, today we got a look inside to learn how it works.

“We reduce the energy consumption inside, super high performing appliances, very efficient lighting, very efficient mechanical equipment and then we produce electricity and we presume hot water on the roof of our building,” said Martha Bohm, Assistant Professor.  

This high performing home uses much less energy than a typical house.

“This house is very significant levels of insulation. We have twice as much insulation as required by the building code and it has very high performing windows,” said Bohm.

Students initially built the house for a contest sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy in 2015, and it won 2nd place overall.

Now, it’s being used as a teaching tool.

“We give energy back to the grid. So it’s incredibly energy efficient,” said Kenneth MacKay, UB Clinical Associate professor.

Nearly 3 dozen solar panels are on the roof, collecting energy from sunlight.

The 1,100 square foot space produces more energy than it uses.

“We need to think carefully about how we’re producing electricity and we need to think carefully about how much of it we use,” said Bohm,

UB faculty and students believe this type of low energy using home could become more common in the future.

“The reason why we built this house was because it’s our strong belief that this is where the market is going actually already right now,” said Chris Osterhoudt, Student Project Manager.

The GRoW home is now used for classes and tours on UB’s south campus behind Hayes Hall.

For more information on the GRoW Home, go to the following link: http://grow.buffalo.edu/

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