A Home That Heats and Cools Itself

“This week, on my blog, I’ve been writing about the inventions I saw at last week’s Modern Marvels/Invent Now finals. About 25,000 inventors from all walks of life entered this annual contest, which is run by the History Channel and the National Inventors Hall of Fame. I was among the six judges who were asked to declare a winner from among the 25 finalists still standing.”

“The grand prize ($25,000) went to something called the Enertia house, which was invented by an engineer and former log-home architect, Michael Sykes. It’s a design for a home that heats and cools itself, with benefits both the homeowner and the environment.

Two factors contribute to this effect. First, the entire house is made of southern yellow pine. According to Mr. Sykes, this wood is especially efficient at maintaining a constant temperature; it absorbs heat during the day and releases it at night.

Second, air circulates in a convection cycle from top to bottom of the house, constantly redistributing the heat.”

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