May 31, 2019

Excursion to world’s first Plus Energy Office High-Rise Building


Last week, our students from the current cohort of the MSc Renewable Energy Systems visited the world’s first office tower ,that can claim to feed more energy into the power grid than is required to operate and use the building. During their module on Solar Energy - Solar Heating & Photovoltaics they got a tour through TU Wien’s Plus-Energy Office High-Rise Building in the heart of Vienna.

The Plus-Energy Office High-Rise Building is the embodiment of an integral, innovative energy concept that is redefining energy efficiency. Besides this, the integral building concept demonstrates one thing in particular: that plus-energy office buildings are not only technically possible, but are also, above all, economically feasible concepts for the future of working on and in buildings.
The 'Plus-Energie-Bürohochhaus' is an unique research and construction project implemented by Vienna University of Technology (TU Wien) in cooperation with the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy (BMWFW) and the Federal Real Estate Company (BIG). It is more than just the refurbishment of an existing university building. The research project arose from several interdisciplinary projects within the TU's research focus point Energy and Environment - from the scientific planning to the implementation.

The approx. 55 m-high building was constructed in the 1970s and had an energy consumption of around 803 kWh/(m²BGF.a) (primary energy, non-renewable). It housed a main auditorium (lecture theatre), a library, offices and labs with its around 8000 m² of floor space and was home to the Faculty of Technical Chemistry, hence its former nickname 'Chemiehochhaus', or 'the chemistry block'. A large number of the rooms were used as labs, which required there to be a suitably powerful ventilation system; this was housed on the top storey of the building. Over the course of the refurbishment, a new user moved into the building – the Faculty of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, with the previous users moving their labs to the newly built 'Lehartrakt'. The rooms which used to be labs have now become offices, while the 11th floor which housed the ventilation system is now home to the 'TUtheSKY' function room, and provides wonderful views of Vienna. All storeys of the building were fitted with energy-efficient technology as part of the refurbishment.

>> Visit our gallery to view all pictures from the excursion!

>> More information about the Plus-Energy Office High-Rise Building

>> Find out more about the MSc Renewable Energy Systems

Next program start: March 19,2020


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