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One of our MANY Proud American Products! • Available in coils, collated sticks and hand drive • Available in pre-finished colors to match both CertainTeed ColorMax® and James Hardie Colorplus® Technology • Available in both double hot-dipped galvanized and stainless steel for ultimate corrosion-resistance • Engineered for both face and blind nailing applications

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™ LEED® and related logo is a trademark owned by the U.S. Green Building Council and is used by permission.

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Editor’s Log Helpful Links Industry News Supplier News BaySystems helps Girls Home House


Insulated panels enhance paper mill


Efficient Olympic housing

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Gold Medal for ‘green’


Remember ‘dome’ homes?


New Products



Horse farm finds wood alternative


16 Publisher Dean Listle

Office Phone 715-445-2214

Senior Editor Jim Austin

Office Fax 715-445-4087

Editor Renee DuFore Russell

F + W Media, Inc.

Publication Design Sharon Bartsch

Chairman & CEO David Nussbaum

Vice President-Sales Jeff Pozorski

VP, Manufacturing Phil Graham

Advertising Sales Kyler Pope Gary Reichert Shannon Piotrowski

F + W Media, Inc. Magazine Division

Production Coordinators Kathy Budsberg Mark Lilla

President David Blansfield


24 RuralBuilder – Frame Building News – Metal Roofing Magazine



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Welcome to another issue of Rural Builder Green.

Beckrytech® Super Durable Polyester BeckryTech is a high performance, super durable polyester coating for roofing and siding. BeckryTech offers superior color stability, chalk resistance and gloss retention comparable to Silicone Modified Polyesters (SMP). In fact, its color stability, chalk resistance and gloss retention nearly rivals PVDF coatings. Developed 12 years ago, this superior product has been thoroughly tested under a variety of real life conditions in South Florida and 8 other testing sites worldwide. Becker Specialty Corporation is part of Becker Industrial Coatings, a leading world-wide paint manufacturer supplying products to more than 120 countries. BeckryTech - by volume - is Becker Industrial Coatings most used product worldwide for the construction market… one more reason BeckryTech is the best choice for your next painted metal project. Our solutions are global. Are applications are local. Let us tell you more.





Global Solutions on the Spot Becker Specialty Corporation 2526 Delta Lane, Elk Grove Village, IL 60007 .*-#-,,#)+++š.&&#-.(#(*&& |

As interest grows and builders become more knowledgeable about ‘green’ building products and techniques, we hope we can help you keep up — or ahead of — these advances. Is there anything specific you’re looking for more information on? Do you want to read more on New Products, like those featured on Page 30? Or do you want to see more on projects featuring green products? We’re pretty flexible with what we’re publishing in Rural Builder Green — so please, tell us what you want to learn about. What’s hot for you in your area? What’s not as popular as you’d hope it would be? How is the economy affecting “green” building?

Please take a moment to let us know your thoughts. We want to make Rural Builder Green as informational and useful as we can. Thanks for checking out Rural Builder Green.

JIM AUSTIN Senior editor



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HELPFUL LINKS Rural Builder Green and are great resources for contractors looking for information on the latest in sustainable products. Check out the three most recent issues of Rural Builder Green:

› Rural Builder Green Fall 2009:

› Rural Builder Green Winter 2010:

› Rural Builder Green Spring 2010:

At, home of the construction magazine network of Rural Builder, Metal Roofing Magazine and Frame Building News, there are dozens of archived stories featuring green and sustainable products, building methods as well as stories that explain the benefits of green builders are using every day. For a list of stories on the following topics, click on the corresponding link: ENERGY EFFICIENCY: GREEN:



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21ST ENERGY FAIR SET FOR JUNE Custer, Wis. – The Midwest Renewable Energy Association will celebrate its 21st Energy Fair on June 18-20. The Energy Fair transforms rural central Wisconsin into the global hot spot for renewable energy education, with over 23,000 fair attendees each year. The Fair is the nation’s longest running and largest energy education event of its kind. FEATURES OF THE 2010 ENERGY FAIR: More than 280 exhibitors: featuring sustainable living and clean energy products More than 200 workshops: including introductory level to hands-on education: solar, wind, green building, local sustainable food, and more . . . Clean Energy Car Show: featuring demonstration vehicles and exhibitors Green Home Pavilion: emphasizing building and remodeling in a sustainable way Sustainable Tables: including workshops, chef demos, and farmers market to bring sustainability to your dinner table Inspirational keynotes, lively entertainment, great food and local beer.

ENERGY FAIR KEYNOTES: Friday, June 18, 1 p.m. — Jeremy Solin Jeremy Solin is co-founder of Central Rivers Farmshed and Director of the LEAF Program in the Wisconsin Center for Environmental Education at UW-Stevens Point. Jeremy joins us for Local Food Friday at the Energy Fair! Visit for more info. Saturday, June 19 at 1 p.m. — Bill McKibben Bill McKibben is an educator, environmentalist, activist, and founder of, an international climate campaign. He is the author of many books including, Earth: “With clarity, eloquence, deep knowledge and even deeper compassion for both planet and people, Bill McKibben guides us to the brink of a new, uncharted era. This monumental book, probably his greatest, may restore your faith in the future, with us in it.” - Alan


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Weisman, author of the World Without Us. Visit to learn more. Sunday, June 20 at 1 p.m. — Amanda Little Amanda Little is an environmental journalist and contributing writer to New York Times Magazine, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Wired, New York, InStyle, Men’s Journal and the Washington Post. Amanda is the author of Power Trip, in which she maps out the history and future of America’s energy addiction in a wonk-free, big-picture, solutions-oriented adventure story. Visit to read more. The Energy Fair is the premier energy event in the nation. “Since 1990, attendees from around the world attend our Fair to learn about sustainable living and clean energy and connect with others,” says Doug Stingle, MREA Programs Director. “This year we celebrate 21 years of leading the way for clean energy and a better planet.” The MREA also offers sustainable transportation to the Fair, with daily buses from Milwaukee, Madison, and Green Bay. Check for schedules. The Energy Fair is held in Custer, Wis., just seven miles east of Stevens Point. For more information about the Fair, contact the Midwest Renewable Energy Association at 715-592-6595 or visit the website: THE MIDWEST RENEWABLE ENERGY ASSOCIATION —


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THE AIA 2010 NATIONAL CONVENTION AND DESIGN EXPOSITION: DESIGN AS EXPLORATION As a new decade begins in the 21st century, architects and design professionals continue to navigate through a difficult economic climate; rise to the challenges of creating livable communities; and contemplate how the next ten years could revise the traditional ways that they practice architecture. An influential profession finds itself also in flux. What brings constancy and consistency to architecture and architects is design — and that is what we will celebrate and explore at this year’s convention. DESIGN AS DIVERSITY Miami, the host city for the AIA 2010 National Convention, is known for its diverse culture and ethnicities. As the world’s gaze expands beyond east and west and turns increasingly toward the southern hemisphere, Miami has become recognized as the gateway to Latin America — a connector between north and south. In slightly more than one hundred years, it has evolved from a playground for the rich and famous to a cosmopolitan and internationally recognized city. An academic once described Miami as a city built in spurts punctuated by downturns. The city’s distinct architectural movements reflect this. Art Deco, with its rounded corners and eyebrow ledges, flourishes along South Beach. Later, Miami modernist architecture countered the minimalist tendencies of modernism with buildings steeped in eccentricity and excess. From Biscayne Boulevard to the Design District, you can see mid-

century classics such as the Fontainebleau Hotel or the Bacardi Building. In recent years, works by architects such as Enrique Norten, Richard Meier, Cesar Pelli, and Frank Gehry have enhanced the city’s reputation as an influential source of design. In a sign that this practice will continue in the future, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron have recently unveiled their design for the Miami Art Museum, which begins construction next year. CONVENTION EDUCATION No matter how memorable your convention experience is, the real value of attendance comes the following Monday — when you return to your office and apply what you have learned to your work. From Sunrise Sessions that begin at 7 a.m. to 60@6 seminars that conclude by 7 p.m., continuing education options are convenient, plentiful, and well rounded. In 2010, there will be more than 200 program offerings, including preconvention workshops, theme presentations, and expo education. The diversity of offerings, from business planning to marketing and business development, from zero net energy design to building codes, allows you to enhance your knowledge of design, practice management, and career development. Extending the learning opportunities beyond the convention center, AIA Miami has arranged more than 70 educational tours that explore the vibrancy of the city’s architecture — from historic to modern. In just four days and in a single location, you can earn


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all of the continuing education learning units you need for 2010. THE DESIGN EXPOSITION AIA Expo2010 introduces you to more than 800 exhibitors to discover new products, technologies, and services—professional resources that you can implement in your practice or project. You’ll have the opportunity to see and touch products, to get detailed information, and to ask questions of the manufacturer representatives. Jeffery Jerrels, AIA, said, “On the AIA exhibit floor, I get to explore new products, meet vendors and suppliers. It’s been an enormous asset to my career.” NETWORKING The convention offers networking opportunities, both formal (business meetings) and informal (catching up with colleagues in the AIA Town Square). Receptions, tours, excursions, dining opportunities, and social events offer additional opportunities to meet friends and establish new business relationships. Don’t miss the AIA Miami convention party, Sand in Your Shoes — Deco Style, which promises the best of local cuisine and live music set along the shores of South Beach. For David Barkin, AIA, the convention “affords many op-

portunities to reconnect with colleagues,” noting, “These renewed relationships have led to discussions about teaming with those still in private practice as well as expanding my network with colleagues in academia and on the public side.” THE CONVENTION COMES TO YOUR TOWN If you can’t make it to Miami, you can still experience many of the educational offerings by virtue of our virtual convention. All three keynote presentations will be presented live via simultaneous Webcasts. On-demand video of more than 30 additional sessions will also be available — with opportunities to earn learning units. And, since no convention experience is complete without a visit to the Design Exposition, a virtual tradeshow allows you to interact with almost 100 exhibitors. Admission to the virtual tradeshow is free; convention sessions are available to AIA members and others at a low cost. AN INVESTMENT IN YOU Whether you come for the education, the opportunity to network and meet colleagues, or for the overall convention experience, your attendance at the AIA 2010 National Convention represents an investment in you — your career, your practice, yourself.



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BCAP’S TEN PLACES TO WATCH IN 2010 Campaign boosts attention to building codes, promotes information sharing The Ten Places to Watch in 2010 campaign just launched by the Building Codes Assistance Project is recognizing states and localities around the United States that demonstrate a real commitment to promoting energy-efficient buildings. The campaign is designed to facilitate sharing of experiences, best practices and resources with the larger building energy codes community — a practice whose value each partner in the Ten Places to Watch in 2010 campaign recognizes and embraces. Cities and states can demonstrate their commitment to energy-efficient buildings — and gain recognition from BCAP — by such actions as adopting the recent versions of the International Energy Conservation Code and ASHRAE Standard 90.1, delivering compliance training, running enforcement programs or promoting above-code innovation. With its mission to reduce energy consumption in our nation’s buildings through improved building codes, BCAP believes that highlight-


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Austin, Texas • Georgia • Idaho • Kansas Massachusetts • New Hampshire • New York, New York Rifle, Colorado • Santa Fe, New Mexico ing successful programs will bring needed attention to — and widen adoption of — those important energy codes. “With today’s pressing need to educate the public on the economic and environmental benefits of energy efficiency in buildings, we believe the Ten Places to Watch in 2010 campaign will be highly effective in demonstrating successful strategies for energy codes that protect consumers and deliver savings,” says BCAP program director Robin Snyder. “The campaign will educate state and city officials on how to improve

building efficiency through codes. It will not only foster information exchange but also raise awareness on the fundamental role of building energy codes.” Of the nine locations selected so far, Austin, New York City and Santa Fe all have very creative approaches to building code programs, BCAP reports. BCAP invites professionals in the energy efficiency, building sciences and building codes communities to follow along and learn from the experiences each locality is sharing at


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ECOLIFE STABILIZED WEATHER-RESISTANT WOOD LISTED AS GREEN APPROVED PRODUCT BY NAHB RESEARCH CENTER Viance’s Ecolife Stabilized Weather-Resistant Wood preservative formulation has received its NAHB Research Center National Green Building Certification as a “Green Approved Product,” eligible to contribute points toward certification of a building under the National Green Building Standard. The NAHB Research Center is a subsidiary of the National Association of Home Builders. Ecolife Stabilized Weather-Resistant Wood, the first decking product to receive certification as a Green Approved Product by the NAHB Research Center, protects against decay and termites and includes a wood stabilizer system that significantly reduces the cracking, warping and splintering effects of weathering. “Builders can now achieve points towards their Green Certification under the New National Green Building Standard when they use Ecolife Stabilized WeatherResistant Wood for their deck projects. Projects can receive up to six points when used in the harshest termite attack areas of the country,” says Viance director of marketing Chris Kollwitz. The NAHB Research Center Green Approved mark is intended to assist builders, designers and specifiers in identifying products that can contribute points toward green building certification. The NAHB Research Center provides National Green Building Certification for homes, multi-unit buildings, remodeling/renovation projects and subdivisions (land development). Projects that receive National Green Building Certification based on either the NAHB Model Green Home Building Guidelines or the National Green Building Standard can display the “Green Certified” mark. To view the complete list of the NAHB Research Center’s Green Approved Products, visit www. “Ecolife Stabilized Weather-Resistant Wood is an industry breakthrough product that provides superior

performance and environmental benefits,” says Steve Ainscough, president of Viance. “Its unique wood stabilizing properties keep decks looking better longer. This technology provides the industry with an exciting choice for contractors and consumers who prefer the inherent strength and natural beauty of wood.” Ecolife Stabilized Weather-Resistant Wood is protected with EcoVance preservative — the active ingredient of which was awarded a U.S. EPA Presidential Green Chemistry Award in 1996 for its use in other applications. Ecolife Stabilized Weather-Resistant Wood is an American Wood Protection Association standardized preservative for commercial and residential above ground applications and can be used for decks, railings, fencing, steps, gazebos, outdoor furniture, playground equipment, trellis and lattice work, structural framing, outdoor joist supports, wood siding and wood trim. Providing an extensive range of advanced wood treatment technologies and services to the global wood treatment industry, with an expertise in wood biocides and wood protection chemicals, Viance LLC is an industry leader in the development of advanced greener building material solutions that improve the performance and durability of wood and wood products for sustainable building. Viance is a joint venture between Rohm and Haas Wood Treatment LLC and Chemical Specialties, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Rockwood Holdings, Inc. For more information about Ecolife Stabilized WeatherResistant Wood and Viance wood treatment solutions, visit or call 1-800-421-8661. To learn more about the NAHB Research Center National Green Building Certification and Green Approved products, visit


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REVOLUTIONARY GREEN AND ENERGY EFFICIENT HEATING AND COOLING SYSTEM AVAILABLE IN U.S. Dex USA, Corp., one of Europe’s prominent leaders in radiant heating and cooling solutions, is bringing its state-of-the-art environmentally friendly and energy efficient heating and cooling system to the U.S. The Switzerland-based company has been on the forefront of advances in green radiant ceiling heating and cooling systems all across Europe. The company’s opening of U.S. sales in the Triangle will now provide both residential and commercial builders across the US with a more effective and environmentally friendly alternative to force blown heating and cooling systems. The Swiss — Dex system has many advantages over the traditional force blown heating and cool-

ing systems that are the current standard in commercial buildings and homes in the US. The biggest difference in the Swiss — Dex system is that it is 25 to 30 percent more energy efficient than a traditional force blown system. During a typical 30 year lifespan of a heating or cooling system that can save companies or families tens of thousands of dollars in energy costs. In addition, the system avoids the “dirty� air that often speeds around offices spreading germs. The system is noiseless, easy to install and can increase usable work space by as much as 10 percent, due to the lack of fans, ducts and radiators. It also reduces technical and maintenance surfaces by up to 40 percent and requires little to no maintenance. CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE >










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Rather than using force blown air to change the temperature of rooms or buildings the Swiss — Dex system uses a unique system of coils filled with water in the ceiling to control and change the temperature resulting in a much smaller temperature variant from floor to ceiling. The desired ambient temperature of the room is regulated by a thermostat. When a difference occurs between the temperature of the ambient air and the thermostat settings, the temperature and flow of the water in the system automatically adjust.

ABOUT SWISS-DEX Swiss-Dex, SA is based in Bellevue Switzerland with offices in three countries around the world. The company is a leader in radiant ceiling heating and cooling systems. Swiss — Dex has developed systems for clients all across Europe and been recognized for their achievements in energy efficiency and environmental friendliness. For more information about Swiss — Dex USA please call (919) 929-3256, or visit them online at

CERTAINTEED POWERS NEW GENERATION OF ROOFING PRODUCTS CertainTeed Corporation is powering a new generation of green, sustainable energy solutions with the introduction of the EnerGen Photovoltaic Solar Power Roofing System at the 2010 International Roofing Expo in New Orleans. Unlike other photovoltaic systems on the market, EnerGen is specifically designed with building professionals and conventional roofing contractors in mind, offering ease of installation and vastly improved aesthetics for homeowners. The EnerGen system features integrated Uni-Solar thin-film laminates, a leader in flexible solar modules, that seamlessly integrate with traditional asphalt roofing shingles. The system’s lightweight design requires no rooftop penetrations, making it easier for contractors to install while maintaining roof deck integrity. The laminates lie flush with the remainder of the traditional roofing shingles, providing a streamlined, visually appealing appearance. By providing a more aesthetically pleasing, unobtrusive roof plane with no roof penetrations, the product overcomes the largest objection to the acceptance of solar panels. “Photovoltaics continue to gain momentum as the world’s fastest growing energy technology,” says Guillaume Texier, president of CertainTeed Roofing. “Through the development of EnerGen, a lightweight, easy-toinstall system, we are helping building professionals and roofing contractors expand their product offering and seize new opportunities for growth.” The EnerGen system is offered in pre-engineered kits containing all components necessary for installation. Its flexible design allows it to be customized to meet a home’s specific energy needs and environmental conditions. EnerGen’s versatility makes it perfect for residential remodeling or new construction projects.

For more information, visit


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PPG INTRODUCES CONTINUING EDUCATION PROGRAM ON COOL ROOF COATINGS PPG Industries’ industrial coatings business has introduced Cool Coatings for Metal Roofing, an American Institute of Architects’ Continuing Education Service course. The designated sustainable design course earns participants Health, Safety and Welfare credit as well. The four learning objectives of the new AIA/CES course are to familiarize architects with: • Key terms and definitions that relate to cool roofing • How cool roofing works and its benefits and attributes • Current cool roofing specifications, codes, regulations and guidelines in the United States • Research that validates the cool roof concept With these additions, PPG now offers classroom instruction for 18 AIA/CES-approved courses. The courses are taught by PPG representatives throughout the United States, and can be scheduled as lunch presentations at architectural firms or at the time and place of a firm’s choice. Each course lasts for approximately one hour. PPG also has eight courses approved by AIA for distance learning, enabling architects to take classes at their computers or to download content as a slide show or printed document. Distance learning courses by PPG, which earn participants one learning unit credit upon successful completion, are available for free at To view a complete list of AIA/CES courses available from PPG, visit or call 1-888-PPG-IDEA (774-4332)

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call today...800.776.3645




BaySystems helps bring hope to New Orleans nonprofit BaySystems donates energywise energy efficiency program to help Girls Hope House realize substantial long-term savings in new facility aySystems continued its support of worthwhile non-profit construction projects with a donation to the Girls Hope House in New Orleans, La. The new 6,700– square-foot home replaced the residential facility for disadvantaged girls destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. BaySystems provided it’s energywise Energy Cost Savings Guarantee program to the home, which will result in approximately $3,000 annual savings in energy bills. energywise is a residential program that combines energy performance analysis, HVAC system sizing and spray polyurethane foam insulation to guarantee savings in energy costs. BaySystems donated Bayseal OC SPF insulation and Bayseal CC SPF insulation systems to efficiently seal the building. New Orleans architecture firm Garrity + Accardo Architects designed the new home with energy efficiency in mind. “Being able to provide BaySystems’ energywise program and SPF insulation in this home was ideal,” says Donna Accardo, principal of Garrity + Accardo. “The house is a large pier and beam wood construction home for eight girls and four staff residents. It’s easier to raise money for one-time expenses than on an ongoing basis, so we went with the energywise program because the guaranteed lower monthly energy cost will be a significant savings for Girls Hope’s annual energy expenditures. The energywise program helped relay to the owner the exact savings in monthly costs as well as how we could reduce the amount of air conditioning equipment installed during construction.”


The Girls Hope House project represented an opportunity for BaySystems to further its commitment to sustainable rebuilding along the Gulf Coast. The company also donated Bayseal SPF insulation to the Long Beach, Miss., community revitalization program following Hurricane Katrina. “We are extremely pleased to support community initiatives like The Girls Hope House project,” says Renee Zierden, general manager, BaySystems. “This home is not only healthier for the girls, but also for the environment. “The Girls Hope home will undoubtedly see long-term savings in its energy bills over the life of the building. Not to mention that by using Bayseal foam insulation, it will realize advanced installation capabilities to guarantee those savings and provide a healthy, environmentally sound home.” Energywise preferred contractor Geaux Green Building Systems of New Orleans installed the SPF. Boys Hope Girls Hope is a national non-profit organization that provides family- like homes to help academically capable and motivated children in need. Both the boys and girls homes were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. For more information about spray polyurethane foam product families from BaySystems, call 1-800289-8272 or visit For more information about the energywise residential energy efficiency program, call 281825-4757, email or visit

ABOUT BOYS HOPE GIRLS HOPE Boys Hope Girls Hope of Greater New Orleans is a nonprofit organization that provides family-like homes and


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educational support to help motivated children in need reach their full potential. Both the boys and girls homes of BHGH New Orleans were severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina. More information about the Boys Hope Girls Hope residential program and recovery from the storm can be foundation at

ABOUT BAYSYSTEMS BaySystems manufactures spray polyurethane foam systems for residential and commercial buildings and provides a complementary family of roofing, insulation, coatings and primers. The BaySystems energywise Energy Cost Savings Guarantee is a systems approach to residential energy efficiency that combines an optimally designed HVAC system with Bayseal spray foam insulation installed by an energywise Preferred Contractor. The BaySystems energywise Energy Cost Savings Guarantee is backed by Bayer MaterialScience to provide homeowners a substantial reduction in energy usage. ABOUT BAYER MATERIALSCIENCE Bayer MaterialScience LLC

The Girls Hope House is set up like a family home environment, which is a critical element of the BHGH program. It uses conventional building materials and a traditional New Orleans shotgun plan.

is one of the leading producers of polymers and high-performance plastics in North America and is part of the global Bayer MaterialScience business with approximately 14,300 employees at 30 production sites around the world and 2009 sales of 7.5 billion euros. The company manufactures high-tech polymer materials and develops innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical, and sports and leisure industries. Sustainability is central to Bayer MaterialScience LLC’s business and is based around the key areas of innovation, product stewardship, excellence in corporate management, social responsibility and respect for the environment.

Providing a tight building envelope is just part of the equation for improved energy efficiency. Bayseal open-cell spray polyurethane foam insulation is used in all exterior walls, and all joints and openings are caulked to ensure a complete seal.




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Recycled-paper mill is World’s most advanced KingZip insulated standing seam roof provides aesthetic appeal, easy installation and sustainable benefits In 2007, Pratt Industries, Inc., the sixth largest paper and packaging company in the United States, made a commitment to invest one billion dollars in recycling and green energy infrastructure within the next 10 years. Working toward that promise, Pratt Industries recently built the most advanced recycled paper mill in the world. Located in Shreveport, Louisiana, adjacent to Pratt’s new materials recovery facility, the completed mill features 159,674 square-feet of twoinch thick KingZip Insulated Standing Seam Roof panels from Kingspan Insulated Panels. Known for being a green company, Pratt Industries works to encourage recycling and clean energy. Using environmentally sensitive solutions on its facilities was essential. Kingspan’s KingZip possesses outstanding thermal performance, contains significant recycled content, has a long product life and contributes toward a superior building envelope that reduces the demand for energy used to create a comfortable atmosphere for building occupants. These attributes contributed to Pratt Industries’ core beliefs, helping to make KingZip an ideal roofing solution. In addition, KingZip meets the requirements for the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design green building program, as well as Energy Star and cool roofs.


KingZip features a thermally broken concealed clip design. It not only provides superior aesthetics and weathertightness, but also helps reduce heat loss through the side-joint and minimizes the possibility of condensation at the clip assembly. Additionally, KingZip minimizes the need for through fasteners that penetrate the external facing and the panel’s vertical side seam and integral batten provide an attractive linear accent. KingZip comes pre-engineered as a single component with insulation already foamed in place, allowing for single-step installation. The Panel’s 42-inch width makes it easier to handle and position, enabling fast installation which helped to meet the project’s deadlines. Jeff Vega, the installer from Commercial Industrial Sheet Metal, agreed. “The Pratt Paper Mill project was effortless. The easy installation process of the KingZip product has made it easy for me to choose to use KingZip again.”

ABOUT KINGSPAN INSULATED PANELS Kingspan insulated metal panels can help significantly reduce building energy consumption and consistently contribute to U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design credits and overall certification. Visit for more.


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Olympic housing proves efficient Long-term plans call for use as affordable housing units ut of all the new infrastructure projects showcased at the 21st Winter Olympic Games, Vancouver’s Olympic and Paralympic Village used to house the competitions’ 2,800 athletes and officials must have been one of the most impressive. Its construction, completed at the end of 2009, involved all of Lafarge’s expertise in LEED certification, which was required by the specifications to reduce the buildings’ environmental footprint in terms of energy efficiency, water consumption and heating, while using local materials and reusing of any surplus. These sustainable design specifications required the concrete have an 80 percent recycled content value. Several formulations of high-volume fly ash concrete (developed using tests conducted in Lafarge laboratories as well as LEED assessment calculations) made a strong contribution to meeting the cost, performance and sustainability requirements. Derived from burning coal in electric utility plants, fly ash can be used as a supplementary cementitious material for improving the strength, durability, workability and other properties of concrete. In addition to its many economic and performance advantages, fly ash use in concrete is good for the environment as it saves virgin raw materials and makes use of an industrial by-product that might otherwise be disposed of in landfills. It also allows concrete producers to optimize their use of portland cement, thereby reducing the carbon footprint and lowering the embodied energy of concrete. With eight complexes distributed over a 90-acre former industrial waterfront property, the impressive 600,000-square foot village, containing more than 600 dwelling units is the first phase in an immense project to redevelop the South-East False Creek area near downtown Vancouver. With the recent conclusion of the Paralympic Games, the environmentally friendly village will now be sold to the public and become a


fully integrated, socially inclusive community that will be home to 16,000 people. Plans call for 250 affordable housing units, a 45,000-square foot community center, three child care centers, an elementary school, community garden, public plaza, and much more. By design, LEED-certified green buildings have operational efficiencies that make the facilities cheaper for the community to operate as a legacy to be enjoyed for generations.

ABOUT LAFARGE The Lafarge Group is the world leader in building materials, with top-ranking positions in all of its businesses: Cement, Aggregates & Concrete and Gypsum. With 78,000 employees in 78 countries, the Group posted sales of 15.9 billion Euros in 2009. Lafarge North America Inc. (“Lafarge North America” or “Lafarge”), a Lafarge Group company, is the largest diversified supplier of construction materials in the United States and Canada. In 2010 and for the sixth year in a row, the Lafarge Group was listed in the “Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World.” With the world’s leading building materials research facility, the Lafarge Group places innovation at the heart of its priorities, working for sustainable construction and architectural creativity. For more information about Lafarge North America, go to WWW.RURALBUILDER.COM 19

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Gold Medal for ‘Green’ Insulspan contributes to comfort, sustainability in Vancouver Delta B.C., business took an extra measure of pride in Vancouver’s 2010 Olympic Winter Games because its products were helping to keep athletes, spectators and the media warm and dry and were contributing to Vancouver’s sustainability efforts. Insulspan’s Delta plant produced the structural insulating panels for the Cypress Creek Lodge at the Cypress Mountain venue in Whistler and for the NBC Broadcast Centre in Vancouver, the Olympic Games’ home base for the U.S. television network. The company is also participating in a number of high profile “green” building projects in BC, most notably the net-zero energy Whistler Vision 2010 house, and West House, a laneway house in


Yaletown. Insulspan SIPs are building components that allow contractors to build and insulate in one step. The panels’ core of expanded polystyrene insulation is sandwiched between two sheets of oriented strand board, resulting in an uninterrupted span of solid insulation that can also bear structural weight. One critical element of energy-efficient design is a well-insulated, airtight building envelope. RDC Fine Homes, builder of the Whistler Vision house, specified the Insulspan structural insulating panel system for the walls of the home in order to meet this requirement. Plastispan under-slab insulation and Advantage insulating concrete founda-


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tion forms, sister products of Insulspan SIPs, were also used. “Part of the advantage of Insulspan products is that they magnify the efficiency of the home,” Whistler Vision homeowner Richard Wyne says. “Insulspan SIPs allow us to achieve the airtightness to make the home and the HVAC system work correctly.” West House, an energy-efficient laneway home built by Vancouver’s Smallworks also uses Insulspan products to ensure a tight building envelope. The 610square-foot house, which also boasts a 226-square foot garage, was showcased at LiveCity Yaletown, David Lam Park, one of the two City of Vancouver celebration sites during the 2010 Winter Games. More than 30,000-square-feet of SIPs were used for the roof of the Cypress Creek Lodge, increasing the structure’s operating efficiency while keeping guests comfortable. NBC needed a warm building in a hurry, and one that could be taken down after the Games. It was a tall order, but the modular nature of SIPs, which come in sizes up to 8 by 24 feet, allowed the walls and roof to be prefabricated, complete with window and door openings, then quickly assembled at the site.

Specializing in Products for the Post Frame Industry



MWI is proud to say that we manufacture our own round track and accessories!

For more on these projects contact Tony Mammone, Insulspan Business Unit Manager, at 403-569-4323, or To learn more about Insulspan products, visit Insulspan is a subsidiary of Calgary’s PFB Corporation, manufacturer of proprietary insulating building products based on expanded polystyrene (EPS) technology. EPS Product Solutions offer products including rigid insulation board stock; insulating building systems; geotechnical engineered applications; buoyancy, and packaging and display applications.

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LifeTime Lumber rides into Tar Heel horse country Wood-alternative lumber enhances attractive residential spread; pastures, paddocks, shelters, gates and barn stalls all benefit from good looks, fire-resistance and durability

or homes, facilities and properties in urban, suburban and rural settings, decking and fencing from LifeTime Lumber ( protects and compliments the best of American architecture. In Foxfire Village, North Carolina, a cozy horse and golf centered community of 600 nestled in the sandy pines of the southcentral region, a 15-acre family horse farm has tapped LifeTime, the eco-friendly wood-alternative lumber for its entire property’s fencing, horse paddocks, shelters, gates and barn stalls. The property, informally named “Gaitaway Farm”, is a residential horse farm owned by the Robert Pollard family and includes 6,500 feet of fencing among lovely tall pine trees bordering green pastures. The landscaping project, started in fall of 2008 will be completed in spring of 2010, was designed with a landscape architect and implemented by the owner. The Pollards used brown colored LifeTime Lumber on fences to compliment and tie into the similar colored brick finish of their new home and guesthouse. Sage green LifeTime Lumber will be used on the barn’s stall doors and inside stalls where the color will nicely offset the


barn trim also of Lifetime Lumber and painted exterior fiber cement siding. The entire perimeter of the farm is getting the LifeTime Lumber treatment – not just the front of the property. The owner felt this was important for a heightened aesthetic sense, unifying the property as well as the enjoyment of the increased strength, safety and low maintenance of the wood-alternative material. With plans to retire there some day, the Pollards aren’t planning to sell this property any time soon. Interestingly, however, for resale purposes they created structures and infrastructure that could offer utility for a commercial horse breeding or small equestrian operation. So everything on the property is built tough with an eye for details and a focus on low maintenance, optimizing it for potential resale. “We chose LifeTime Lumber primarily for its good looks, low maintenance and green story,” says Robert Pollard, owner of the property. “It has been kicked multiple times and there has been no damage whatsoever. We were also thrilled to learn that the lumber is naturally fire-resistant, and won’t rot or be eaten by termites, since this is a big


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issue in North Carolina.” “Initially the folks at the company were very helpful in answering all our questions and that great service kept right on going throughout the installation. We couldn’t be happier with our choice of building property fencing, paddocks and stalls with LifeTime.” “Our material delivers on a number of vital issues regarding upkeep, damage by pests, fire-resistance and an overarching concern for deforestation,” says Nisha Vyas, vice president at LifeTime Lumber. “Horse owners are definitely nature lovers and when they learn about how our product is over 65 percent reclaimed material, they just get it. Perfect for use in barns, pastures and paddocks, word is spreading on the benefits of our products.” With five colors to choose from and strong warranty support, LifeTime Lumber is an ideal solution to projects requiring a wide range of features and benefits. Ideal for building fences of any size, LifeTime Lumber’s versatile profiles can be used for a multitude of applications for municipal, commercial or residential use, including patio covers, privacy fencing, decks, docks and ranch and equestrian fencing.

ABOUT LIFETIME LUMBER LifeTime Lumber is a unique, non-hazardous composite made from material recovered from the electric power generation industry. Ideal for building decks, docks and fences, LifeTime Lumber offers the aesthetic attributes of wood, while solving the problems of degradation, weathering and perpetual maintenance. Importantly, the material is neither a wood nor a plastic, but rather a mineral filler created with polyurethane and fly ash which prevents rot, pest damage, mold, mildew and flammability. LifeTime Lumber is also ecofriendly as it is made from 65 percent recycled material, reduces the need for logging, emits no toxicity and uses less energy than other composite processes. For more visit


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The way to go

DOME Classic design boasts value, energy efficiency by Olive Witte

American Ingenuity photo

centuries old and are being rediscovered and adapted to today’s urgent need to be more frugal in the way buildings are designed and built. A classic example is the dome, which has been used for centuries. Examples include the Pantheon in Rome, the Duomo Cathedral in Florence, Italy, and even the igloo. A more modern variation is the geodesic design. Today, domed structures can be found for every building type, from two-car garages to stadiums, churches to offices and houses to warehouses. The modern day dome was originally developed in 1922 by a German inventor and popularized in the 1950s and 1960s by American futurist R. Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983). Among his most famous buildings are Spaceship Earth at Disney’s EPCOT Center in Florida and the Climatron in St. Louis. A geodesic structure is composed of a repeating network of triangles. Although it looks like a dome, it is

Oregon Dome photo

Not all the good ideas for energy conservation are new ones. Some are decades or

Top, the 61-foot diameter Cottage Grove school, built by Swearengin Construction, takes shape quickly. The foundation is created with insulated concrete forms. Above, an upper level panel on a small dome home is easily hoisted into place.


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Above, a raised geodesic home in a wooded setting is surrounded by decks. Left, the dome’s open concept allows for creative placement of furniture in a bright and airy-feeling living room.

American Ingenuity photos


actually composed entirely of flat surfaces. The dome’s nearly spherical shape enables it to enclose more space with less surface area than a rectangular structure. Strength comes from the egg-like shape, further reducing material costs and structural support. These advantages translate into: • Rapid construction without heavy equipment. • Light-weight materials that can be erected by inexperienced two- to six-member crews in two days or less. • Low construction costs. In fact, construction is so light, quick and easy that half of all sales are made to owners who do their own erection.

Dozens of manufacturers supply pre-engineered kits that builders can erect on a prepared foundation. Offthe-shelf designs are available for a variety of sizes, configurations and building types. A church, for example, might have two domes — one for the sanctuary and the other for a fellowship hall — joined by a narthex. The dome gives an exalted feeling to the sanctuary and plenty of ceiling height for basketball or badminton in the fellowship hall. Or a custom design can be created by the manufacturers, usually at no increase in cost. Because of the inherent strength of the shape, dome buildings are well-suited for difficult locations, especially those subject to extreme winds such as tornadoes and hurricanes or earthquakes. Advocates of green building appreciate the dome’s design. Heating and cooling the dome is more efficient because air circulates naturally with few (or no) sharp corners to trap heat. Domes are especially well-adapted to solar panels. One surprise for owners might be the excellent acoustics of dome buildings, especially churches,


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Hinton High School, left, and Avalon School, above, both in Oklahoma, and built by Monolithic Domes, are steel-reinforced, super-insulated concrete buildings that meet FEMA standards for near-absolute protection from tornadoes and hurricanes.

Monlolithic Domes photos

raising. Accessories that complete the framing of the dome are available. The most expensive is $9,800. Standard packages are available for houses and garages. For example, a 45-foot-diameter Pioneer dome package provides 1,466 square feet of living area on the first floor and 572 usable square feet in a loft.

HOW BIG IS BIG ENOUGH? where the sanctuary typically is open.

VARIATIONS ON A THEME Three variations typify today’s options in construction components suitable for light construction applications: • Wood panels, by Oregon Dome, Veneta, Ore., 800-5728943, • Steel-reinforced, super-insulated concrete panels, by American Ingenuity, Rockledge, Fla., 866-524-3663 or 321-639-8777 or • Concrete (shotcrete) applied on an inflated form, by Monolithic Dome Institute, Italy, Texas, 972-483-7423 or For a more complete list of dome building manufacturers, visit and search for dome. (Editor’s Note: some links in thomasnet are broken.) Oregon Dome publishes a list of prices, ranging from $13,000 to $65,000. Prices typically include design and the services of a factory specialist to supervise the dome

Geodesic buildings typically are described by their diameter. For example, “30 ft 4 freq.” indicates a diameter of 30 feet and a height of 15 feet. The higher the frequency, the more spherical would be the shape of the dome and the smaller the triangles. An 8-foot triangle obviously is easier for builders to handle than a 16-foot triangle. The website ( for Good Karma domes has a detailed explanation with illustrations. After the geodesic building’s initial burst of popularity in the ‘70s, enthusiasm waned because its futurist shape was, if anything, too striking for some tastes. Further, the unusual shape required adaptations that took experience to work out. Some typical questions, concerns and objections raised in a conversation about dome construction and dome living are discussed by online reference source Wikipedia on its dome pages at wiki/Geodesic_dome. Yet, many of the concerns are moot points or can be


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explained quite simply. Here is how Linda Boothe, marketing director for Oregon Dome, responds to some of them. Her comments are in italic type.

pensive. One solution is to use a lower profile dome without a second floor. We recommend this approach for most commercial buildings. Again, simple and repetitive is the way to save money.


Spaces within curved boundaries tend to be less usable than within rectangles. The curved walls require either custom furnishings, 100 percent prefab design or an open spaces approach. RESPONSE: That objection might apply to a second floor or loft upstairs. But geodesic homes certainly can have interior walls to divide areas such as bedroom and bathroom. A typical main floor will have 10 vertical walls and no curved surfaces.


Geodesic buildings are susceptible to leaks, due to the large number of edges created by the triangles. RESPONSE: That’s why buildings are shingled. Any good grade of laminate shingles or shakes will prevent leaks.



Windows conforming to code can cost anywhere from 5 to 15 times as much as windows in conventional houses. RESPONSE: Wrong again. We use conventional lines of windows in our domes. Windows certainly can be customized, but it is not necessary. As before, to the extent this might be a problem, it is addressed at our end, since we ship framing ready to receive the windows as specified by the owner and contractor. Professional electric wiring costs more because of increased labor time. RESPONSE: Not true. Where there is curvature as in a loft room, we use more interior wall lights.

Residential geodesic domes have been less successful than those used for working and/or entertainment, largely because their complexity makes for higher construction costs. RESPONSE: On the contrary, repeating shapes make them less expensive. CONCERN:

CONCERN: The dome shape makes it difficult to conform to code requirements for the placement of sewer vents and chimneys. RESPONSE: That is correct, but resolved with careful design.

Off-the-shelf building materials (e.g., plywood) normally come in rectangular shapes, and much material may have to be scrapped after cutting rectangles down to triangles, thus increasing construction costs. RESPONSE: Wrong. One shape is a flip of the other. In any case, whatever waste there might be is on our end and would be reflected in our prices; and we certainly do plan to minimize waste. CONCERN:

CONCERN: Fire escapes are problematic for larger struc-

tures, and they are expensive. Indeed. Meeting codes is not difficult, just ex-



Circle Reader Service #482


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Chinese Alliance Church photos

The Chinese Alliance Church in Wheaton, Ill., completed in 1993, consists of two domes. Its sanctuary, right, is a graceful and exalted space that is energy-efficient and boasts excellent acoustics.

Air stratification and moisture distribution within a dome are unusual and tend to quickly degrade wood framing or interior paneling. RESPONSE: In a dome, you don’t get air stratification because it provides continuous air circulation. Bathrooms and kitchens are vented to the outside and if the owners use the vents, interior moisture is not a problem. CONCERN:

Privacy is a problem because a dome is difficult to partition satisfactorily. Sounds, smells and even reflected light tend to be conveyed through the entire structure. RESPONSE: If you try to live or work all in one room, this is true. Framing to the ceiling will provide sound and light separation. CONCERN:

Floor space next to sloping walls can be difficult to use due to lack of headroom. This creates a volume that might require heating, representing an energy cost, but that cannot be lived in. RESPONSE: As said, some edges in a loft might have less than 5 feet of headroom. So make it a closet. But it is not a heating problem because air circulates. CONCERN:

CONCERN: The circular floor plan lacks the simple modu-

larity provided by rectangles. Furniture manufacturers usually design with flat walls in mind, so placing a standard sofa, for example, results in the waste of a half-moon behind the sofa. RESPONSE: Custom furniture is a complex solution to a non-problem. Our ground floor typically has 10 flat walls. There are no circles inside the dome. When I design a kitchen, I make it with right angles so you can hang cabinets. In a

bedroom, a pie shape becomes a closet. We provide simple modularity for the interior plan. Right angles come off exterior walls. Dome builders, using cutboard sheathing, find it hard to seal domes against rain because of their many seams. Also, these seams may be stressed because ordinary solar heat flexes the entire structure each day as the sun moves across the sky. RESPONSE: Same in a rectangular structure, only worse: hot on one side, cold on the other. It is the roofing that protects the building, not the framing. CONCERN:

The most effective waterproofing method with a wood dome is shingling, but even this can be a problem at the top of the dome, where the slope is less than that required by most roofing materials. One solution is to add a peaked cap to the top of the dome or to modify the dome shape. RESPONSE: A cupola is a lovely solution. It gives indirect light and ventilation and permits a steeper roof. CONCERN:

GET VOLUNTEERS TO PITCH IN Because of the simplicity of construction, some geode-


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sic designs are suitable for projects that might have to depend on volunteer labor, such as churches and schools. Concerned about a lack of emphasis on art, parents in a school district in Cottage Grove, Ore., began exploring ways to raise money for an art teacher and art building. They were successful on both counts, although volunteers would have to do most of the construction work. Fortunately, one of the volunteers was general contractor Swearengin Family Construction in Cottage Grove. Ground was broken in fall 2007. The concrete foundation was created with Amvic insulated concrete forms. Materials for a 61-foot diameter geodesic dome was supplied by Oregon Dome. Swearengin expects the building, which will boast 2,941 square feet of space, will be ready when school begins in September. Total contributions for the project will come to about $150,000 in cash, time and materials, Swearengin said, including $37,000 for the dome kit, which also was paid by a donor. To have completed the project at prevailing labor rates would have cost at least $250,000, Swearengin said. Why a geodesic dome? The lead donor wanted a unique building and enough space for creative activities. The dome answered both needs at an affordable cost. Niangua, Mo., responded to a different set of problems to build a pre-school. Located in tornado alley, the community needed a shelter that would withstand the destructive force of extreme winds. By combining both needs, the small school district was able to obtain a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The solution was a steel-reinforced, concrete building by Monolithic Domes. It will cost $311,750, with 90 percent coming from the federal government. The school was expected to have been completed in March. The 2,941 square foot dome has a diameter of 61 feet. The new building will enable the district’s preschool children to move from double-wide trailers — famous as tornado magnets — to a secure facility that keep 400 people safe from extreme weather. An important side benefit will be the anticipated energy efficiency of the building, according to David South, president of Monolithic. A dome can cost as much as 50 percent less to heat and cool, compared to

a conventional structure of the same size. “The energy savings alone will usually pay for the total cost of the structure within the first 20 years,” he said.

SCHOOLS, SPORTS AND SHELTERS Gyms are especially well-suited for dual purpose school-and-community shelter functions. The construction method for Monolithic Domes is as unusual as the buildings themselves, South said. The process begins with the placement of a ring beam footing and the pouring of a circular, steel-reinforced concrete slab floor. In many cases, a stem wall then is erected to give the building straight walls and a more conventional look. Next, crews attach an Airform, a tarp made of tough, single-ply roofing material, which is inflated using giant fans. Once the Airform is inflated, work moves to the interior where treated wood is attached to frame the windows and doors. Three inches of polyurethane foam is then sprayed on the rest of the Airform, and a grid of steel rebar is attached to the foam. In the final step, crews spray on a layer of shotcrete that ranges from 4 inches at the top to 8 inches at the base. The result is a permanent and virtually indestructible building, South said. The durability of dome buildings is no longer in question, although some of its advantages can be seen as disadvantages. For example, the Chinese Alliance Church in Wheaton, Ill., was designed for 250 members when it was built in 1993. Although its paired domes — one for the sanctuary, one for a fellowship hall — have served the congregation well, according to the Rev. Danny Ma, the pastor, its acoustics are so good that they can become annoying. A whisper at one end can be heard clearly at the other end. Moreover, the church has grown to 400 members and is not quite sure how to expand the sanctuary. But the congregation got exactly what it wanted when the church was built: a finished cost under $1 million (plus land), erection of the structure in one day, an exalted space with sight lines unrestricted by structural columns and a distinctive shape that has remained the talk of the community. Oliver Witte teaches journalism at Southern Illinois University. Contact him at


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SKYLIGHTS Wasco Skylights introduced an energy efficient innovation to its residential line of skylights, Triple Glazed Series, a triple glazed skylight, making the company one of the first in the nation to offer this important advance over double glazed units. “eMax3” gives home-owners another tool for creating an energy efficient living environment and qualifies them to receive a tax credit under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009. “If we have a niche in the industry, it’s innovation,” says Jeff Frank, Wasco CEO. “Now we can offer customers a significant advance in energy efficiency and save them money on the purchase.” Triple glazed eMax3 consists of an inner and outer pane of Low-E glass with a pane of clear glass sandwiched between. Argon gas insulates the two airspaces. While Low-E glass has become standard for moderating solar heat gain and controlling heat loss, Wasco has gone a step further and selected what the company considers to be one of the clearest and highest performing Low-E products in the industry — Low-Ē3 from Cardinal Glass Industries, Inc. When combined with other high performance design elements, Wasco’s triple glazed Low-Ē3 skylights provide up to 55 percent greater insulating value than double-paned skylights with clear insulated glass. Low-Ē3, so named for its three layers of silver which limit solar heat gain and permit the maximum transmission of light, blocks 95 percent of ultraviolet rays and reduces window heat gain in the Wasco units by as much as 69 percent as compared to identical skylights constructed with two panes of clear glass. For a comfortable home in the coldest weather, the Efficient Windows Collaborative, a partnership between industry representatives, NGOs and the U.S. Department of Energy, recommends that windows and skylights be constructed with glass that will maintain a room side temperature of at least 52 degrees when the outside temperature reaches minus-20 degrees, performance criteria that Cardinal reports Low-Ē3 can achieve with only a single pane of glass. According to the company, most other Low-E products on the market would mea-

sure 47 degrees under the same conditions; and ordinary glass would measure 0 degrees. Under AARA, homeowners who purchase an eMax3 skylight in 2010 are eligible for a federal tax credit for up to $1,500 or as much as 30 percent of the product cost ( pr_taxcredits). In order to qualify, the skylight must have a U-factor (the rate of heat loss) and Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (a measure of how much heat due to solar radiation can be transmitted) of no more than 0.30. The eMax3 in Wasco’s energy-efficient E-Class SkyWindow, a self-flashing unit in either a fixed or venting style would qualify a homeowner for this tax credit. Wasco also offers the eMax3 in the leak proof, economical curb-mount skylight. More information on these skylights and Wasco’s complete product offerings is available at


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CEILING PANELS With the introduction of the unique and versatile Ecophon Master Solo S suspended ceiling panel to the North American market, CertainTeed Corporation opens up a whole new range of sustainable design options to building and design professionals. The product allows creative design in ceiling spaces, permits the easy integration of a variety of lighting systems and features a 75 percent recycled content, Class A sound absorption and painted edges for an aesthetically appealing appearance from every angle. Ecophon Master Solo S is a suspended ceiling panel that combines easy installation and an attractive appearance. The panels are hung by ceiling wires fastened to suspension wire anchors, which are easily screwed in around the center of the panel’s unexposed side. Ecophon Solo S features painted edges and no profiles around the panels, enabling it to be poised at a variety of angles for a true floating ceiling effect with a very clean, minimalist appearance. “Ecophon Master Solo S ceiling panels provide architects with an unlimited variety of options, allowing them to create stylish environments where acoustics and lighting contribute to the identity of the room,” says Lisa Santerian, marketing director for CertainTeed’s Ceilings Division. “An ideal solution for schools, offices, restaurants and auditoriums, the panels also offer coveted sustainable attributes that are in high demand.”

Ecophon Master Solo S is manufactured from highdensity fiberglass and has a high recycled content of 75 percent. The product features Class A sound absorption and a 0.95 noise reduction coefficient, allowing them to enhance acoustic control in a space. In addition, the visible surface of the ceiling panel has an Akutex FT surface finish, which offers 85 percent light reflectivity and 99 percent light diffusion. This helps create a pleasant, energy-efficient interior environment, with more natural distribution of lighting. The panels also can be combined with a wide variety of light fixtures that can either be integrated into or suspended through holes easily cut into the center of the panels. Ecophon Master Solo S ceiling panels can be used as the basis of 3D installations as well. By using the panels in different levels and angles, the designer can make the ceiling the focal point of the space. The panels are available in nominal sizes 48 inches x 48 inches and 48 inches x 96 inches. For more information, including an Ecophon Master Solo S installation video, visit

SOLAR FANS MacroAir Technologies, a company founded on the very principal of innovation, is surfing that wave with the introduction of the MacroVoltaic fan. Receiving the highest certified rating, the MacroVoltaic fan is the only solar high volume low speed industrial fan on the market. Established by Walter Boyd, the inventor of HVLS commercial fan technology, and a family-owned company since its inception in 1995, MacroAir combines technology with a unique application of the laws of physics to produce air-circulating fans for use in large industrial, commercial and agricultural buildings. HVLS fan technology is unique in that it is designed to generate a column of air that flows down to the ground and outward 360 degrees. This large, slow moving air mass moves throughout the space, mixing and circuCONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE > WWW.RURALBUILDER.COM 31

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lating air more efficiently without generating the noise and dust created by other industrial fans. And because MacroAir fans are already far more energy efficient than standard industrial fans, the conversion to solar energy has been a natural progression for an already innovative use of technology. The MacroVoltaic air movement system includes the HVLS fan with an attached controller, a specialized component that converts power from the solar panels, as well as the solar panels, which have a 20-year warranty, standard remote control, an optional auxiliary power

supply, and an optional battery backup. The MacroVoltaic is designed to operate in a variety of methods to best meet individualized consumer needs. The system can be used as a stand-alone solar fan, as a solar fan with auxiliary backup, as a solar fan with battery backup, or as a solar fan with both auxiliary and battery backup. For more information about the MacroVoltaic fan and other MacroAir Technologies products, visit

GLASS Expanding on its heritage of developing innovative glass products that deliver outstanding performance, AGC Glass Company North America has introduced Comfort E-PS Energy-Efficient Low-E Glass. This lowemissivity, energy-efficient glass meets Energy Star requirements for the northern region of the U.S. and all zones in Canada, making it ideal for use in colder climates where heating costs are the primary concern. New Comfort E-PS has a solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of 0.73 — the highest level of any glass available on the market. The technology in Comfort E-PS allows high levels of free solar heat from the sun to enter the home, while its thermal insulating properties retain heat inside the residence and keep cold air outside. This superior level of performance reduces energy costs year after year for homeowners. In fact, based on independent testing results, a typical homeowner in the northern markets mentioned can save an average of $130 annually with Comfort E-PS, when compared to a standard low-SHGC window. Comfort E-PS pyrolytic (hard-coat) glass is recommended for use in homes, condominiums and apartments, but it can also be utilized in selected commercial applications. Featuring a colorless, neutral appearance, the product is a versatile choice for all types of architectural styles. “This innovative glass offers an excellent balance between passive solar heating and thermal insulating

qualities, enabling northern homeowners to save energy and reduce their annual heating costs substantially,” says John Rarick, AGC Glass Company North America’s marketing manager, Building Products Group. “The product is a testament to the fact that AGC is committed to delivering tailored energy performance for every region, assuring maximum performance, energy efficiency and comfort inside your home, regardless of the weather conditions outside.” The high thermal insulating value of Comfort EPS glass keeps the inside surface of the window glass warmer. This warmer surface minimizes that cold, drafty feeling caused by cold glass surfaces and creates a cozier, more comfortable environment within a home. Comfort E-PS is engineered to provide homeowners with high levels of light transmission and daylighting, enabling them to enjoy more natural light and reduce energy consumption for artificial lighting. To learn more, visit


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WATER SAVER Invented by Michael Schuster, fourth generation plumber and founder of MJSI, Inc., the HydroRight Dual Flush Converter reduces water usage by up to 70 percent with its Quick Flush option for liquids and paper. Installation can be completed in less than 10 minutes, as it requires no tank removal or tools. Consumers simply remove the old toilet flapper and handle, slide the HydroRight over the overflow tube and tighten the product. And, because its dome gasket replaces the flapper, problems associated with flappers like leaks and broken or tangled chains are prevented. The HydroRight retails for less than $25. Visit

UNDERLAYMENT StrongSeal is a performance eco-friendly rubber roofing underlayment membrane that delivers exceptional waterproofing performance over traditional asphalt based products. Derived from recycled tire crumb, StrongSeal contains an extremely high percentage of recycled and post consumer recycled material making it an exceptionally green, earth friendly product perfect for sustainable living. Visit StrongSeal DB nail down underlayment: Installed over the field of the roof deck prior to common exterior roofing materials like architectural shingles, slate, tile, shake and metal roofs. The StrongSeal DB is also able to be used at such areas as parapet walls behind EFIS or stucco architectural finish systems. StrongSeal DB-18: Used as an interlayment between the shake courses required whether the deck sheathing is spaced or solid. StrongSeal DB-18 interlayment acts as a barrier that prevents wind driven rain and snow from entering the attic cavity during extreme weather conditions by forcing water to the surface and increases the roofs insulating value. StrongSeal SA self-adhered underlayment: Used at critical roof areas such as eaves, valleys, ridges, rakes, dormers, and skylights to protect the structural roof deck from water penetration created by ice dams and wind-driven rain. StrongSeal SA is also used over the field of the roof deck prior to common exterior roofing materials like architectural shingles, slate, tile, shake, synthetics and metal roofs when complete deck coverage is required.

HEATINGCOOLING SYSTEM The Acadia: combined heating and cooling system is a new alternative technology that eliminates the need for fossil fuels, keeping the whole house comfortable, year round, at a fraction of the cost. While most homeowners initially consider it for its heating value, they are delighted to learn that with a flip of a switch the Acadia converts to a central air conditioner. Like the better mousetrap, the engineers at Hallowell International took traditional heat pump technology, something that those living in warm climates are familiar with, and applied a proprietary, patented technology called Boosted Compression to create Acadia — the first heat pump to work efficiently in cold climates. The Acadia will keep a home comfortably warm no matter what the weather is outside, even as cold CONTINUED ON NEXT PAGE >


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as minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit. The Acadia outperforms conventional heating systems by almost 300 percent, and has already lowered home energy bills by up to 70 percent. The system can be installed in new builds or can be retrofit when consumers are considering green upgrades. The Acadia works with the existing infrastructure but for those ready to take the leap and live off the grid the Acadia can work in conjunction with wind and/or solar technologies to enhance their efficiencies. For more information visit

WINDOWS People considering energy efficient home improvements are sometimes inspired by Earth Day. Earth Day serves as a yearly reminder of what’s important year round: reducing homes’ carbon footprint while saving money. This year, Mikron Industries, one of the most innovative and customer-focused solutions providers to window manufacturers, offered its EnergyCore window system technology to the best vinyl window manufacturers in the country. The breakthrough replacement window system is the most important vinyl window innovation in years, designed to help window manufacturers deliver superior thermal performance compared to fiberglass, rigid PVC and wood frame materials. What this means to homeowners is that EnergyCore-enabled window frames improve full window U-factors by almost 15 percent over hollow vinyl window frames. Windows made with Mikron EnergyCore are the most energy efficient vinyl windows available. In fact, windows using triple glazing systems such as those including Duralite spacers by Truseal, paired with the EnergyCore frame system, will exceed current Energy Star requirements by as much as 50 percent. And with the Department of Energy’s Energy Star standards expected to tighten by 2013, the EnergyCore system is expected to exceed future standards. “If you’re thinking of an energy efficient remodel or

retrofit at the very least make sure to choose an Energy Star window,” says David Wemmer, president of Mikron. “Energy efficient windows lower solar heat gain, which is the heat that enters your home through a window. The U.S. Department of Energy says that replacing single-pane windows with new Energy Star windows can save occupants $126 to $465 in annual energy bills depending on climate zone; so just imagine the savings in annual dollars from an EnergyCore window system that outperforms Energy Star by 50 percent.” “We’re entering a new era of green efficiency with rapid changes in technology appearing everywhere in our society. Therefore it is more and more important to be ahead of the curve in making purchasing decisions on a range of products in our daily lives; from the kind of car you drive, to the food you eat and, of course, how you retrofit your home. Energy usage considerations are more important than ever,” added Wemmer. By choosing windows made with EnergyCore technology, homeowners can ensure energy bills will be lower, and that they will continue to exceed standards for years to come. EnergyCore-powered windows are available in tilt double hung, casement; picture, and double slider replacement application styles. The system also features Simulated Divided Lite with trim options to fit a variety of regional architectural design styles. Finishes: Natural Maple, Light Oak, Medium Oak and Cherry, and in a range of popular exterior colors. To learn more about Mikron’s new EnergyCore window system and other window technologies, visit


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Rural Builder Green  

Everything you need to know about how to build green structures in rural areas.