Natural elements keep homes comfortable

EVEN IN a freezing Ladakhi winter some houses stay comfortably warm, without either coal or electric heating. That's because these houses face the sun and they are well insulated, featuring heat-absorbing surfaces in dark shades. They are the products of a new architectural technique called passive solar architecture, which keeps houses warm in winter and cool in summer, without using conventional forms of energy.

The IIT-based Centre for Energy Studies (CES) in New Delhi, which has been researching energy-conserving architectural technology since 1973, holds demonstration programmes and workshops throughout the country. CES also publishes "Climatological Atlas", which describes the basic rules of passive solar architecture.

The Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources is collaborating with CES to bring out publications on passive solar architecture, conduct workshops and implement projects. Its nodal units in each state can be approached for information on energy saving technology.

The Central Public Works Department (CPWD) Training Institute and Housing and Development Corp (HUDCO) also support passive solar building projects in the form of loans and sponsored research on housing issues. A CPWD-sponsored housing colony is under construction in Nehru Nagar, New Delhi.

The Central Building Research Institute, Roorkee, is the leading Asian research organisation for building materials and technology. It also publishes material on passive solar architecture.

The Solar Energy Unit in Pondicherry is another building unit pioneering solar energy applications, particularly the design and modelling of passive solar building concepts.

Several private architectural firms are actively involved in promoting energy related appropriate technology. Two Delhi-based firms are Design, Architecture and Associated Technologies (DAAT) and The Action Research Unit (TARU). They are considered among the leaders in this field and DAAT has built a township in Ladakh, based entirely on passive solar architecture.

To get in touch...

N K Bansal
Centre for Energy Studies
Indian Institute of Technology
New Delhi 110 016
Phone: 666979

T C Tripathi
Ministry of Non Conventional Energy Sources
9th Floor, Block 4-B
CGO Complex, Lodi Road
New Delhi 110 001
Phone: 4362728

K B Rajoria
Central Public Works Department Training Institute
E Wing, Nirman Bhawan
Maulana Azad Road
New Delhi 110 011
Phone: 301884

Building technology wing
Lodi Road
New Delhi 110 003
Phone: 699534

Central Building Research Institute
Roorkee (UP) 247 672

Chaman Lal Gupta
Solar Energy Unit
Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Pondicherry 685 001

Sanjay Prakash
Design, Architecture and Associated Technologies
S-239, Panchshila Park
New Delhi 110 017
Phone: 6441422

Aromar Revi
The Action Research Unit
5-D, Vijay Mandal Enclave
Hauz Khas
New Delhi 110 016
Phone: 3012982

Sen Kapadia
104, Oyster Shell
Juhu Beach
Bombay 400 049

Building Technology Division
Department of Civil Engineering
IIT Madras 600 036

Devaki R & D Engineers
111, R C Dutt Road
Baroda 390 005

Centre for Development of Rural Technology
Institute of Energy and Rural Technology
PO Box 52490
Allahabad (UP)11 002

Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Group
DAV University
Indore, Madhya Pradesh