European funding award for plus energy housing

European funding award for plus energy housing

RMIT is a partner in a €9.6M European funded research project that will see the build and demonstration of plus energy housing in France, Germany, Norway and Italy.

The project will see the creation of modular and replicable solutions for plus energy housing, which is a type of housing that generates more energy than required. The excess energy generated onsite from renewable energy sources is then available for other uses elsewhere.

The five-year research project is named Climate and cultural-based design and market valuable technology solutions for plus Energy Houses (CULTURAL-E).

It's being led by EURAC Research in Bolzano, Italy and involves 18 partners including research centres, industry groups, universities and social housing providers across six European countries.

Professor Ralph Horne, RMIT project lead for CULTURAL-E and Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor, Research and Innovation for the College of Design and Social Context, said the research will help to build an understanding of how cultural dynamics and social practices interact with local climate and building design and technologies at household level.

"The project is informed by both local climate and cultural factors associated with building occupants, which will then be mapped at an EU level to inform plus energy housing design and delivery.

"The work is grounded in the long-standing premise that ‘buildings don’t use energy, people do’," he said.

RMIT’s research team includes Iván Luque Segura, Research Fellow at RMIT Europe, who will be coordinating the development of a European Cultural and Climate Atlas for Plus Energy Houses Design.

Luque said the project paves the way for the development of future positive energy districts.

“It will provide insights in how cultural and material arrangements work at the individual building level, as a precurser to plus energy settlements,” he said. 

CULTURAL-E officially kicked off in October 2019 in Brussels.

Story: Karen Matthews

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement Number 870072.


  • Sustainability
  • RMIT Europe
  • Urban Design
  • Property & Construction
  • Environment

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