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Energy Solutions for Residences “Zero Energy House (ZEH) of 2030” competition entered by five universities.-- ENEMANE HOUSE 2014


CO2 emissions increase in the housing sector at odds with Japan’s commitment

With the Japanese government adopting the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 came the international commitment to reduce the nation’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 6% compared to 1990 levels in the four years from 2008 to 2012. The Japanese Government strengthened the Act on the Rational Use of Energy on a step-by-step basis to facilitate this reduction, but GHG emissions continue to grow. Although the industrial and transportation sectors succeeded in reducing GHG emissions, the building and housing sectors have had substantial increases. In particular, GHG emissions in the housing sector showed a 60 percent increase in 2012 from 1990. To deal with this situation, The Japanese Government promotes the construction of Zero Energy Houses (ZEH*) and Zero Energy Buildings (ZEB) as measures to reduce CO2 emissions in the housing and building sectors. As part of this drive, implementing the ZEH concept in all newly built standard houses by 2020 is a goal, but one not widely known as yet by the general public.

* ZEH (Zero Energy House) is a house that consumes zero or close to zero energy on an annual net basis by reducing primary energy consumption throughout the house through enhanced energy efficiency performance of the full housing envelope and facilities, networking of neighboring houses, on-site utilization of renewable energy, and related measures. (Source: The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry report)

CO2 emissions by sector


Industry-academia joint teams compete to build ZEH house prototypes,promote development and dissemination

In January 2014, the “ENEMANE House 2014” exhibition was held at the main venue of Tokyo Big Sight Shinonome temporary parking lot. This exhibition was organized as part of the project led by the METI’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy to promote the introduction of innovative energy-saving technologies for houses and buildings. The exhibition was to promote the construction and proliferation of ZEHs through the development and verification of advanced technologies. Under the theme “Houses of 2030,” proposals incorporating three concepts of energy consumption reduction, lifestyles for 2030, and a roll-out of ZEH houses into emerging markets were solicited. Universities teamed up with housing companies and housing equipment/construction material manufacturers to build model houses for the competition and these were evaluated for energy conservation performance and new ways of living.
Over ten teams entered the competition and these included five industry-academia consortiums led by universities that passed the screening: Keio University, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Chiba University, University of Tokyo, and Waseda University. These consortiums constructed model houses.

“ENEMANE House” area at ENEX 2014 held in Tokyo Big Sight

Keio University – First Prize “Keio Co-Evolving House”

Keio University’s proposal was a stilt house with greenery-covered walls built using a new CLT*-based construction technique that can flexibly accommodate high-density urban development requirements of Asian cities. The interior has an integral multi-level space centered around the dining table. This structure provides a flexible floor plan that can be customized while keeping the basic mass-production standard system. The house can therefore evolve to meet the owner’s lifestyle changes. This house incorporates a home energy management system (HEMS) that provides comprehensive control over all environmental equipment depending on the flow of energy and environmental conditions.

* CLT (Cross-Laminated Timber) is a panel made of multiple layers of wood with each layer stacked crosswise on top of each other. With sufficient thickness, CLT is expected to see increasing use as an ideal structural material.

Main equipment in use
- Power station
- Power distribution equipment
- LED lighting fixtures
- Living station
Stilt house designed by considering the development of an environmental city in Asia
Click on the image to enlarge

Shibaura Institute of Technology – First Prize and People’s Choice Award
“Haha-no-ie 2030”

This shared house-style residence aims at a lifestyle in which people live in harmony together, rather than just an assembly of individuals. The roof with a checkered pattern is a “breathable roof” that proactively uses the airflow created by temperature differences, while effectively utilizing heat, electricity and light generated from sunlight. Bedrooms as constructed as private rooms and the communal kitchen, bathroom and washroom are built as high-performance “environmental shelter” units featuring high thermal insulation and sealing properties. The environmental shelters are also designed for export to Asian countries.

Main equipment in use
- Half-type HIT PV module
- Power station
- Storage battery unit
- Power distribution equipment
- Heat recovery ventilator
- IH cooking heater
- “Ara Uno” tankless toilet
- “nanoe” air purifier
Half-type HIT PV modules are installed on the checkered pattern roof
Click on the image to enlarge

Chiba University – First Prize “RenaiHouse”

This is a sustainable energy house that uses natural energy. High-strength units made from large-cross section wood and composed of laminated wood core and panels are used. By combining these similarly as with building blocks, a large space and flexible room divisions were possible. This in turn allows renovating the house into apartments, an office, store, or school. The outer walls and floor have high insulation and are able to retain much heat, resulting in a comfortable living space without relying on air conditioning equipment.

Main equipment in use
- Storage battery unit
- Electrical outlet
- LED lighting fixtures
- Flooring material
CUJ unit creates a large space without pillars
Click on the image to enlarge

University of Tokyo – Grand Prize ZEH prototype of urban collective housing for 2030

Designed as a single unit of an apartment house, this prototype houses structures and equipment in its east and west side cores, while leaving the central space as a multi-purpose living area. Various environmental conditions such as heat, light, wind, sound and people can be incorporated into the unit depending on the climate and the dweller’s lifestyle. Multiple modules comprise this apartment house named “CITY ECOX,” so that heat, electricity, means of transportation, greenery and water can be shared among apartments to create a safe, secure and energy-efficient community.

Main equipment in use
- Power station
- “ENEFARM” household fuel cell
ZEH module for “CITY ECOX” urban collective housing
Power station and ENEFARM fuel cell

Waseda University – First Prize “Nobi-Nobi House – a house of several layers”

This proposal places the equipment core at the center surrounded by dwelling zone, which in turn is surrounded by the “Nobi-Nobi” zone, resulting in a triple structure. The equipment core incorporates Japan’s advanced technology and living infrastructure into a package. Solar light is converted into various forms of energy, such as heat, electricity and light. The Nobi-Nobi zone is also usable for a greenhouse depending on the season or region, supporting living comfort using natural energy.

A house surrounded by Nobi-Nobi zone


In the prototype ZEH houses built by the five academia-industry consortiums, the power consumed and generated, daily load factor, thermal, light and sonic environments were monitored for six days and evaluated by the panel of judges. The “ENEMANE 2014” grand prize went to University of Tokyo consortium with its “CITY ECOX” ZEH urban collective housing prototype.
Four consortiums led by Keio University, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Chiba University and Waseda University received first prizes. Shibaura Institute of Technology consortium’s “Haha-no-Ie 2030” received the “People’s Choice Award” based on exhibition visitor votes.

ENEMANE HOUSE 2014 awards ceremony with review

*Products shown here may not be available depending on the country or region.

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