The concept of the living lab is to achieve a grid-supporting zero energy building starting from an existing representative building. Achieving zero on a yearly basis might not be a smart choice at larger scale if we use the grid as a long term storage system. The intention here is to maximize the match between production and consumption and apply storage where needed.
Technologies and materials applied are often not yet available on the market. The Living Lab is a testcase, a case where Th!nk E and the relevant industrial partners jointly leverage components to systems, question current practice and simulate, demonstrate and test to see what can be done differently.
The Living Lab is a unique combination of high end technology and a satisfying answer to today's demands regarding comfort and safety.
An old farm, built in 1931, is the starting point. It is a typical Belgian building, stand alone as that represented the largest share of 36% of the market at the start of the project. Building regulation demanded to refurbish, but keep the style and looks of the original building. However, legislation also forced us to improve the building envelope to meet certain energy efficiency standards. A close cooperation with the local and regional administration turned the original 1931 design into a highly efficient renovated dwelling, where mainly the inside reminds of the old structure.
The Living Lab is owned by Th!nk E. It is set up to offer a unique and high added value to R&D with clients and partners in the broad area of energy in buildings and smart energy management.