Everywhere we go, we notice the importance of energy and how it makes our lives easier. Without energy, life as we know it would simply not exist. Still, we forget that certain ways of producing energy puts our and our Earth’s existence to risk. For this reason, the EU countries have adopted guidelines towards increasingly efficient energy consumption and encourage the use of energy from renewable sources. If we take into account only buildings – they consume nearly 40% of all final energy. As EU members, we are committed to its Directive 2010/31 (Directive on the energy performance of buildings). This rule introduced to construction engineering and design the term nearly-zero-energy- building (NZEB), which should reduce energy consumption in buildings. And for public buildings, the NZEB standard will be obligatory already by the end of 2018!
The NZEB is defined as a highly energy efficient building that functions with very low energy consumption. As professionals, we must be well prepared and develop ways to design sustainable buildings that will not consume more energy than allowed (e.g. the primary energy consumption of a single family home must not exceed 75 kWh/m2a).
A comprehensive and well designed energy shield is one of several main measures to achieve this standard. It means that our building must be enveloped in continuous layers – also of thermal insulation – as quite often, the thermal insulation below the building’s foundation slab is neglected and forgotten. Heat transfer is not limited only to walls and roofs. As with all elements of a building, heat also passes through the floor into the surrounding earth. With other words, as heat is lost through the building’s floor, additional heat must be provided to ensure the desired living comfort.
To prevent this, Fibran developed its foundation pillow FIBRANxps. It offers excellent thermal insulativity, as its λ value (thermal conductivity) due to its extremely low absorption of water by immersion and diffusion remains unchanged even after 50 years of contact with water and moisture. Yet, construction in Slovenia, as compared to Austria and Germany, is much less predictable, as we must take into account the area’s seismic load. To overcome this, Fibran has upgraded the state-of-the-art way of constructing foundations with the SEISMIC foundation pillow. It has specially designed grooves and verified load capacity for dinamic loads such as earthquakes. This foundation pillow’s system solution prevents layers from slipping as the pillow alleviates the earthquake shocks and reduces their effect on the building. An acknowledgement of the FIBRANxps foundation pillow as the supreme solution is the new Squashland in Ljubljana, Slovenia..