Ecocor to be Industry Partner for TeamMTL at Solar Decathlon China 2018

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TeamMTL Employs Passive House Principals that Significantly Reduce Energy Demand in Prototype for Competition

Ecocor, a construction company that manufactures, delivers and assembles high performance Passive House buildings, will act as the industry partner for TeamMTL at Solar Decathlon China 2018 in Dezhou, China. TeamMTL is a collaborative endeavor between the School of Architecture and several other departments at McGill University and Concordia University in Montreal.

Originally established by the United States Department of Energy in 2002, the Solar Decathlon is a biennial green energy building contest that challenges collegiate teams to design, construct and operate an architecturally sophisticated and energy efficient solar-powered house. The 2016 competition includes 21 teams representing 11 countries and 49 universities.

“TeamMTL’s goal is to employ socially, culturally and technologically advanced architecture that embodies energy efficiency, comfort, wellbeing, affordability, environmental sustainability and ecological awareness,” said Ben Wareing, Architecture Lead of TeamMTL. “Sustainable building starts with quality construction and design, and Ecocor’s 21st Century, prefab approach to building the most energy efficient homes on the market today helped us reach our objectives.”

TeamMTL decided to use a home design strategy that dramatically reduces the demand for a substantial heating and cooling system. TeamMTL’s entry, named Deep Performance Dwelling (DPD), is a net-zero energy capable home that combines Passive House-inspired design and a Building Integrated Photovoltaic Thermal (BIPV/T) system. Together, these systems ensure high-performance capability through passive and active systems, superior indoor air quality and up to a ninety percent reduction in energy demand for heating and cooling.

DPD’s design is a combination of the proven Montreal Row House typology, fused with the Siheyuan Courtyard style, common in China. Conceived for maximum flexibility and adaptability, DPD will address contemporary living, allowing for various family compositions, live/work scenarios, sharing economy opportunities and inter-generational living in a dense urban setting. Because TeamMTL is committed to using affordable, sustainable materials that are sourced locally, North American timber is used for the frame and throughout the home.

Typically, Ecocor homes are assembled once, but for the Decathlon, the company worked closely with TeamMTL to engineer the prefabricated panels so the components can be assembled, shipped and disassembled multiple times.

The home’s components will first be shipped to a site in Montreal and assembled in mid-June. Once assembled, DPD will be on display for the public through October, and TeamMTL will host open houses and other events that demonstrate its energy efficiency. Then the house will be disassembled, packed and shipped again, via train and boat, to Dezhou, China for the competition in the summer of 2018.

“At Ecocor, we aimed to develop a platform to create high quality, energy efficient and affordable prefabricated homes,” said Chris Corson, Founder and Technical Director of Ecocor. “This competition, and the added challenge that the house components needed to be shipped, assembled, disassembled and shipped again before final assembly, is a testament to the flexibility and configurability of the Ecocor manufacturing platform.”

After the competition, DPD will be sold to the city of Dezhou, where it will eventually be used as a residence. TeamMTL will use the proceeds from the sale, along with additional competition proceeds and partner contributions to build more versions of DPD in Montreal, to be given to families in need of affordable housing. Throughout their existence, the homes will be used in a long-term monitoring “living lab” research program.

About Ecocor
Ecocor is a construction firm that designs, manufactures, delivers and assembles high performance buildings throughout North America. Ecocor’s patent pending foundation and wall designs reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling buildings by 80-90%, which substantially reduces the cost of ownership and the building’s carbon footprint, while increasing the comfort of its owners. Using panelized building components as a construction platform, Ecocor has better control, higher quality and much shorter time-to-occupancy than any site-built construction. Learn more at

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Robert Kreis
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