The current mantra in designing homes is “tear down those walls!” Open floorplans are must-haves because they accentuate the casual living environment that consumers crave.
9 innovations from the Greenbuild show
Owens Corning is taking its tried-and-true EcoTouch fiberglass insulation line to a new level of green with the introduction of
EcoTouch with PureFiber
Owens Corning is taking its tried-and-true EcoTouch fiberglass insulation line to a new level of green with the introduction of PureFiber binder technology. Unlike traditional binders, which utilize formaldehyde formulation, PureFiber is made with natural materials, offering a formaldehyde-free product — and at no additional cost. The product uses a minimum of 50 percent recycled content (30 percent post-consumer) — the highest certified percentage in the fiberglass insulation industry — and features good product recovery, stiffness, strength, and softness, easing installation.
Made from 100-percent recycled resin, the EcoStud Track and Stud System from Superior Polymer is designed specifically for framing interior, non-load-bearing walls or partitions that support gypsum wallboard construction. The durable, lightweight members minimize thermal bridging, helping to prevent rapid heat loss. EcoStud is impervious to water and are designed for fast installation using common tools — the studs can be cut and trimmed with a chop saw.
Breez Ventilation Fan
Delta Group, one of the world’s largest providers of switching power supplies and DC brushless fans for the electronics industries, has adapted its ultra-quiet DC brushless motor design for its new collection of Breez Ventilation Fans. The motor, along with the company’s switch power supply technology, provide a low-noise solution with energy savings up to 65 percent compared to similar products, according to the maker. Available with and without humidity sensors, the ceiling-mount ventilating fans are rated for continuous running.
Using a non-toxic process that alters the wood’s reaction with water, Accoya high-performance wood offers the exceptional durability and dimensional stability of costly tropical hardwood products, but using sustainably sourced softwood. Accoya wood is based on acetylation, a process that effectively changes the free hydroxyls within the wood into acetyl groups — greatly reducing the ability of the wood to absorb water. The wood is suitable for a variety of applications, including siding, decking, and custom window frames.
H2Option dual-flush toilet
American Standard debuted the industry’s first truly siphonic, dual-flush toilet, which utilizes the company’s PowerWash technology to provide a strong, yet quiet, push and pull action to scour the bowl with every flush. Using as little as 1.0 gallon of water on the low setting, the H2Option dual flush lets users decide whether to use more or less water for each flush, potentially saving up to 25 percent more water over current standards.
In our November 2010 issue, we wrote about the new line of sustainable bricks from CalStar Products. The company debuted the product line at Greenbuild, as well as a new collection of pavers for residential applications. Both products are competitively priced with traditional paver and brick products, and both are using the company’s proprietary production process, which utilizes fly ash, generates 85 percent less CO2, and uses 85 percent less energy than traditional fired clay. The products also incorporate 40 percent recycled content.
Solar-Powered Trash Compactor
Designed for use by municipalities but also ideal for large community developments (especially those with a strong green marketing message), the Solar-Powered Trash Compactor from Waste Management can reduce track collections by up to 80 percent by compressing contents using a sun-powered compactor. Available with or without companion recycling kiosks, the units can be covered with virtually any custom exterior shell design. Fewer collections mean cost-savings for labor, fuel, and maintenance.
CertainTeed’s SilentFX acoustic gypsum board consists of Green Glue viscoelastic, noise-reducing polymer sandwiched between two Type X fire-resistant gypsum boards. The cost-effective solution achieves a sound transmission class (STC) rating of 50 and higher, and also offers a high level of mold and fire resistance. Designed for use on interior walls and ceilings, SilentFX can be used for new construction or renovations over wood or steel framing.
WT6500 Wind Turbine
The Greenbuild show roundup would not be complete without a wind turbine product. Windtronics showed off the new Honeywell WT6500 Wind Turbine, which is designed for both commercial and residential applications. Unlike traditional turbines, the WT6500 utilizes a system of magnets and stators surrounding the outer ring that capture power at the blade tips, where speed is greatest. The design also minimizes mechanical resistance and drag, resulting in minimal noise and vibration. The gearless wind turbine measure six feet in diameter, weights 185 lbs., and produces 1,500 kWh per year on average.