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Since the 2011 earthquake, houses in Japan must have high energy efficiency and a stable power supply during emergencies. By leveraging its over 50 years of experience
as a housing company and outstanding technological strengths as the Panasonic Group, PanaHome Corporation is promoting the development of smart houses and smart cities to pursue energy technologies for the entire home and for comfortable family lives.
In 2010, we were developing a zero carbon footprint house. Having built an experimental house through collaboration between industry and academia, we began verification testing on energy saving and energy management. As a consequence, the following year marked the debut of the CASART TERRA home, which fully exploits sunlight, natural breezes, and heat to realize a comfortable lifestyle with virtually zero CO2 emissions. The full insulation design is employed for the entire home, including ceilings, exterior walls, and even the foundation. The low-emissivity double-glazing glass, which has air between two glass panes, reduces heat losses even through large windows.
The ECO NAVI ventilation system exploits geothermal heat by reducing the air conditioning load by taking in fresh air from underneath the floorboards that is cooler than the air outside in summer and warmer in winter while enhancing comfort. Our ventilation system also automatically selects mechanical or natural ventilation by measuring the temperature differences between the inside and outside of the house with sensors and thus maintains good ventilation while reducing thermal losses. Without sacrificing comfort, energy efficiency was improved by combining such natural energy as geothermal heat and integrated hybrid ventilation systems in addition to a full insulation design.
In response to the increasing demand for zero energy houses after the Great East Japan Earthquake, PanaHome Corporation developed a state-of-the-art house called a ďSmart PanaHomeĒ by adopting an Energy Creation-storage Linked System for the Home that combines a photovoltaic power generation system and a storage battery, as well as SMARTHEMSTM for smart energy management for the entire home. The Smart PanaHome enables stress-free energy conservation and gives greater energy independence during power outages. We achieved comfort and eco-friendliness for the entire home not only by adopting energy management through energy creation, storage, and saving equipment but also by combining energy management with passive technology for increasing the building strength.
We are scaling up our smart house solutions to apply them to an entire town. PanaHome Corporation is promoting the development of PanaHome Smart City Shioashiya, one of the largest such cities in Japan.*2 Around 400 detached houses in the city will be equipped with an Energy Creation-storage Linked System for the Home, a W power generation system that combines photovoltaic power generation and ENE-FARM fuel cells, and HEMS. Our goal is to achieve net zero energy and virtually zero CO2 emissions throughout it. We are also planning to build a sustainable town that ensures the safety and security of future generations.
Panasonicís SMARTHEMSTM will be installed in PanaHome Smart City Shioashiya. This will make smart lifestyles even more intelligent through energy-efficient operations of home appliances and other equipment throughout entire home and energy management that automatically reduces power consumption. The town will support smart grids, which will be introduced in the near future.
A zero carbon footprint house is a house with virtually zero CO2 emissions, where air tightness and thermal insulation performances are enhanced, natural energies are effectively used, and various systematic equipment and specifications are combined that allow energy creation, storage, saving, and links to make the energy balance visible.
This system enables efficient storage of the electricity generated (created) by photovoltaic or fuel cell cogeneration systems and the use of this electricity when main power is close to its limit or temporarily unavailable. Alternating current (AC) is generally used to transmit electricity, but since photovoltaic power generation systems and storage battery units supply direct current (DC), photovoltaic power generation systems are equipped with a DC/AC converter. This power conditioner is not 100% efficient, so energy is lost during the conversion process. AC/DC conversion is also required for storing power in storage battery units. The hardwired systems for energy creation and storage, however, directly store the DC power from photovoltaic panels in storage battery units to maximize the use of the generated power.
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