WASHINGTON — What will the green home of the future look like? According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), experts cite the following advances and applications, many of which are beyond the experimental stage:

  • "Thermal storage heaters" that store heat at off-peak energy times for use at peak times;

  • Cogeneration that uses solar/fossil fuel to generate heat/hot water/electricity and sell electricity back to the local power company;

  • Natural gas-fired heat pumps and central air conditioners that use natural gas to fuel internal combustion engines for fans;

  • Ground-source heat pumps;

  • "Cool roofing" materials that absorb heat during the day and redirect it back into the home at night;

  • Vacuum insulation panels that are three times more heat absorbent than products on the market today; and

  • Residential fuel cells that allow power generation at an individual residential unit level.

    Publication date: 04/21/2003