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Foam Glass Plant to Open in Vermont

A Vermont company is nearing the start of production of a building material made from recycled glass that can be used as both a drainage layer and sub-slab insulation. Burlington-based Glavel announced it would open its new, 25,000-sq.-ft. production plant in nearby Essex and be ready to ship product by January. On the production line, pulverized glass combined with glycerin, used as a foaming agent, travels on a conveyor through an oven at 1400°F–1600°F. The result is chunks of a gray, lightweight material weighing between 330 and 375 lb. per cubic yard, according to specs provided by the company. Glavel…

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Making Progress on the Concord Country Cape Project

Megan and Lincoln Pasquina and their young son live in Boston. Like many city-swellers, they want to move out of the city. They have owned a rental property, a New England Cape built in 1880, for five years in Concord, MA. Want to see more of this project? Tune into new episodes every Thursday on PBS and Mondays on the Roku Channel. City-Dwellers Start Renovations Meg Reinhardt During the past 140 years, the Concord home has seen several renovations. The Pasquinas have hired the Silva Brothers to help them improve views of the beautiful three-acre property and make better use…

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Enter to Win $1000 to Spend on Design-Forward Lighting from Lightology

As the days get shorter and darker, it’s a fitting time to turn your attention to your interior lights. Lighting, of course, is a practical way to brighten spaces or create a mood, but in the home office, reading nook, kitchen, or by the bedside, a sculptural, artful, design-forward fixture can also make a statement all on its own. Enter Lightology, online purveyor of lights both classic and avant-garde by the world’s top designers. (It was also voted the best lighting retailer in the world.) This month, we’re teaming up with the company to give away a lighting makeover to…

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Kojima Shōten: Classic Japanese Lanterns Reimagined

Shun Kojima is a 10th generation lantern maker, presiding over lantern manufacturer Kojima Shōten in Kyoto City, which has been around since the Edo period. “From an early age, I played with the surplus bamboo from the workshop and spent time surrounded by lanterns,” he says. “And ever since I graduated from high school, I have been working with my family every day. “Not long ago, I decided to create another workshop and work on training craftsmen. The new Kojima Shōten is located in a two-story, wooden folk house in Amino-cho, Kyotango City, in the northern part of Kyoto Prefecture…

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Benefits of Building with ICFs

Josh Salinger, owner of Birdsmouth Design-Build, is on-site in Portland, Ore., to discuss the benefits of using insulated concrete forms (ICFs) to build a foundation for a small, energy-efficient building. ICFs are modular concrete forms that permanently remain in place to provide insulation for the structure they enclose. The ICFs are used instead of traditional forms for pouring a concrete wall. Each ICF block consists of a pair of expanded polystyrene (EPS) rigid-insulation slabs separated by plastic struts to create a void for pouring the concrete. This project is on an net-zero-energy accessory dwelling unit (ADU), which will be a…

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The BS* + Beer Show: Harnessing Solar Power’s Potential

This episode of the BS* + Beer show is a high-level conversation about solar energy with guests Will Field of ReVision Energy, Sam Brown of Clean Energy New Hampshire, and Joseph Berry of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Will presents 10 tips for “smooth solar installation,” offering insight on things like consumption monitoring, off-grid vs. grid-tied systems, and quantifiable returns. The discussion touches on the next wave of thin-film technologies and solar infrastructure, which will hopefully drive costs down and/or increase capacity. There is talk of direct building–integrated PV, regulatory considerations that drive decisions to transition to renewable energy, net-metering,…

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