Documentation of solar passive buildings in Himachal Pradesh and preparation of energy conservation guidelines and manual.

Project Scope: Preparation of a reference manual on passive solar building technology.

Client: Himachal Pradesh State Council for Science, Technology & Environment

Project Brief: A comprehensive research and documentation exercise was undertaken in 2008 by HP State Council for Science, Technology & Environment; as a follow-up to their me entitled Solar House Action Plan that initiated transfer and popularization of passive solar building technology in the cold regions (above 2000 MSL) of Himachal Pradesh in 1994. The current project has been supported by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), GoI. It reviewed a number of buildings and short-listed a total of ten buildings as models for good practice that have already incorporated one or more passive solar features.

The buildings were selected from Shimla town and Spiti valley in Himachal Pradesh and each of these was documented as a case-study for an insight into the passive solar design adopted for that particular building, its suitability, implementation on site and most importantly the building performance over the years. This exercise which was based on field surveys provided material and to review the passive solar building practices in the region and to understand the obstacles to their adoption more extensively. The purpose of field surveys was to evaluate constructed buildings vis-a-vis technology use, building performance and users’ comments.

After evaluation and analyses as well as detailed discussions with the staff and building occupiers it was found that lack of readily available technical guidance was one of the main gaps due to which passive solar features could not be incorporated at the design stage of the building. To fulfill this gap and to create general awareness about the principles and practices of passive solar design, a publication was compiled based on the investigation and analyses conducted during the field surveys, in the form of a reference manual on passive solar building technology. It aimed to provide basic in a simplified manner, to act as a useful resource and a guiding tool for those interested to apply passive solar technology in existing or new building projects.

The Manual would be particularly useful for home owners, design professionals and construction agencies seeking relevant on passive solar building technologies for cold regions.

Project Cost: 1,00,000 USD

Project duration: 1st April 2008 to 31st December 2009

Project Status: Completed