The Pastour family selected to test the Maison Air et Lumière experiment

For the next year the Pastour family will stay in Maison Air et Lumière testing how well the designs perform in terms of both energy and living comfort so that the projections of the house can be compared with the real-life experiment.

Fabrice (35), Samantha (33) and their two children, Rayan (7) and Ismaël (3), will move into Maison Air et Lumière at the end of August to test its comfort. Fabrice is a bus driver with the Paris public transport system (RATP) and Samantha is the head of a business specialising in e-commerce. Both are mad about new technology.

The couple, who rent an apartment in the Paris area, are on a mission to build a modular, light and low-energy house. Testing the Maison Air et Lumière is the ideal opportunity for them to compare the options and flesh out their project.

"The living quality in a house means a lot to us. Air quality is particularly important because of the allergies our family has (to dust, mould, ozone), and one of our sons is asthmatic. We would like a light-filled house to 'keep our spirits' up, even in winter. Having an ecological and self-sufficient house is an absolute must for us," emphasises the family.

Studies by CREDOC in France have shown that what families really want in the home is comfortable living and that the best way of encouraging the general public to save energy is by simplifying access to good practice rather than providing financial incentives. The project's mission is to define, as precisely as possible and in the context of an experiment, the ideal living conditions for the occupants of a low-energy house in all seasons.

Michel Langrand, Managing Director at VELUX France comments:

"Building energy-positive homes – the challenge set by the new French regulations on thermal insulation (RT 2020) – is becoming a reality. The next challenge we face is defining what comfortable living in these houses actually means. With this real-life experiment we want to play our part in helping define the home of the future."

The experiment consists of making a comparison, over the period of a year, between the targets set when the house was built and what a family consumes and experiences. Any differences from the forecast energy performance and living comfort will then be analysed.

The experiment's results will be shared with building professionals and made available to scientific and political groups so that they can understand consumer expectations and prac-tices when drafting energy policy.

About Model Home 2020
Model Home 2020 is an experiment launched by the VELUX Group as part of our strategy to take an active part in developing sustainable buildings for the future. It is our vision of how future buildings can be both climate-neutral and comfortable and attractive places to live in through daylight and fresh air.

The project is in full accordance with the next generation of design principles frequently re-ferred to as 'active house' ( The objective is to achieve a balance between energy efficiency and optimal indoor climate with a building that dynamically adjusts to its surroundings and yet is climate neutral.

Model Home 2020 comprises six demonstration projects. The two experiments in Denmark were built in a partnership between the VELUX Group and VELFAC. Each of the Model Home projects was implemented in close cooperation with local and regional partners, suppliers, architects, engineers and researchers.

In the VELUX Group, we believe that one experiment is better than a thousand expert views. Each building must reflect and respond to the different climatic, cultural and architectural conditions of the countries in which they are built. The houses will be open to the public for 6-12 months after completion and then sold. Each house will be monitored during occupancy to learn how the experiments turn out in real-life conditions.

The houses in Denmark – Home for Life in Aarhus and Green Lighthouse in Copenhagen – have been in use for nearly three years, those in Germany and Austria opened in the autumn of 2010, and those in the UK and France followed in 2011.

Experiment 6: Maison Air et Lumière
Maison Air et Lumière is a new generation of active home that puts the quality of life of its inhabitants at the centre of its environmental approach. The unique features of the house lie in intelligent use of the sloping roof to combine well-being and energy efficiency. The archi-tectural concept is based on different roof pitches that increase its ability to capture sunlight, making it an energy-positive home.

The Maison Air et Lumière creates a healthy indoor environment.
The house was designed by Nomade Architectes and developed in cooperation with the Cardonnel Ingénierie, E.T.H.A. and industrial partner Saint-Gobain, Aldes and Umicore (VM zinc). WindowMaster and Sonnenkraft supplied products for the house.

Maison Air et Lumière is the sixth of six buildings in Europe to be constructed by the VELUX Group as part of the Model Home 2020 experiment. It was completed in October 2011.

Read more at: