Partnering with Industry in Green Building Innovation

Green-minded home buyers in Calgary have recently purchased two net-zero energy homes constructed by student researchers at SAIT Polytechnic.

Green Building Technologies (GBT) is one of SAIT’s leading research areas in the Applied Research and Innovation Services department. The GBT research initiative was established in 2008, and received a five-year CCI Innovation Enhancement grant in 2009. The research group has grown in expertise, industry-based applied research projects and laboratory capabilities.

One of the research team’s key partners is Avalon Master Builders, a pioneer in green construction that has developed a series of net-zero energy homes. Two of these houses were constructed on SAIT’s campus. These applied research projects provide students with hands-on experience in green building and allow the GBT team to research, test and demonstrate the latest in environmentally efficient building methods. The finished homes now belong to green-minded buyers and are located in two Calgary neighborhoods.

SAIT students and researchers still actively monitor the energy management systems in the Discovery 4 and Discovery 5 homes. And a student project to customize/virtualize Discovery 4’s energy-management system won the 2013 SAIT Student Showcase and DIRTT Student Innovation Award, and represented SAIT at the 2013 Polytechnics Canada Student Applied Research Showcase. Discovery 4 was also named Custom Project of the Year at the 2011 Net Zero Energy Home Awards in Toronto. Avalon will manage the construction of SAIT’s new 4,000-square-foot GBT Lab and Demonstration Centre – scheduled to break ground in early 2015.

About SAIT

SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology) is a leader in action-based learning, delivering relevant, skill-oriented education. We offer two baccalaureate degrees, three applied degrees, 73... Learn more