High-Performance Building Assemblies—Practical Solutions

Presented by: Alan Gibson, G O Logic Architecture and Construction, Belfast, Maine

It is well established that super-insulated, air-tight construction methods, when designed and executed successfully, greatly improve building comfort, health, durability, and energy performance. But are we doing them correctly and cost-effectively? This session dives into the nitty-gritty of how to design and build  foundation, wall, and roof assemblies for high-performance buildings, with details and products illustrated to sort out the good solutions from the not-so-good.

Proper understanding of the dynamics of thermal and moisture transfer is key to designing durable and healthy building enclosures. This seminar will explain what you need to know to create high-performance and risk-free assemblies with the appropriate building science theory to support it. The focus of the session will be a discussion of actual products, means and methods for high performance.

Presenter Alan Gibson is a partner in G O Logic LLC. His company, along with partner and architect Matthew O’Malia, built the state’s first certified passive house in 2010 and has completed over 5 passive buildings since then, including a 36-unit ecovillage community in Belfast, a 10-person residence hall on the campus of Unity College (the first certified passive dormitory in the country) as well as the first passive house-certified science laboratory in North America. Alan will bring his knowledge and expertise in high-performance building to this session to present these learning objectives:

  1. Participants will learn the key elements of thermal and moisture physics as they relate to building enclosures.
  2. Participants will learn specific building methods required to achieve passive house or net-zero level buildings, including super-insulated and air-tight building assemblies, high-performance windows and doors, and appropriate mechanicals.
  3. Participants will learn appropriate ventilation strategies to achieve high indoor air quality within an air-tight envelope.

This presentation is best suited to individuals who have experience with building design and energy use standards at an intermediate level. Information will be derived from multiple sources in the building science and passive house arena, with primary emphasis on established methods and readily available materials.

About Alan Gibson

Alan Gibson a builder and partner in G O Logic LLC of Belfast, Maine, where he is chiefly responsible for construction operations. Since 2009 he has managed construction of three certified passive buildings and a 36-unit cohousing community built to near-passive standards, among other projects. The GO Home, completed in 2010, was the first certified passive house in Maine and recipient of the US Green Building Council’s Residential Project of the Year award in 2011. Terrahaus, the country’s first passive house-certified dormitory, received the Evergreen Award from Eco-Structure magazine in 2012. Alan is a Certified Passive House Builder, a Certified Passive House Consultant, a board member of the Passive House Alliance US, and has been a business owner since 1992. He speaks widely on passive design and construction.