Passive Solar Design Series - Passive Design Principles

Primer on fundamentals of climate responsive design

What you will learn:

  1. Recognize the impact of climate on design

  2. Refresh fundamentals of building heat transfer

  3. Understand the design process to minimize cooling/heating demand

  4. List the different passive design principles


This is a beginner course that is aimed at demystifying the topic, suitable for anyone who wants to learn about environment friendly/ climate responsive/ green buildings and sustainability.


Building consume energy all through its lifecycle - right from construction, operation and demolition during end-of-life. There is substantial evidence that buildings that are designed in consideration to the climate and local context tend to consume less energy compared to conventional buildings. Climate responsive design is really the way forward to reduce the energy demand in a sustainable way. This approach will eventually reduce the use of fossil fuels and associated greenhouse gas emissions.

Passive design principles are inherent to climate responsive design. It includes using appropriate form, orientation, materials, daylight and natural breeze as per the climate, so the cooling demand is sharply reduced. In such buildings, the size of the mechanical cooling system is considerably smaller resulting in low energy consumption. A building can use the most efficient space conditioning system, but if its size is not reduced in the first place, then the environmental benefit it provides is limited. This biggest benefit of a solar passive building is the reduced dependency on mechanical systems.

This course is a part of series called - Passive Solar Design Series that consist of the following courses

1) Understanding Sun

2) Shadow mask

3) Shading Design

4) Kinetic facades

5) Passive design principles

6) Passive cooling techniques

You can take all the courses sequentially to gain an all-round understanding of climate responsive design.

This is the 5th course in these series that covers all the passive design principles that are best integrated during early design development stage. The strategies should be implemented in a three step sequential process that will help result in a building which is sustainable. An overview of building physics is also given in the course to further clarify the concepts.

Who is this course for:

  1. Do you find the word 'environment friendly buildings' intriguing? Then this course will cover the fundamentals of designing such buildings

  2. If you are an architect with keen interest in green building design, this course is just for you !

  3. You want to enhance your knowledge on green buildings, but will not be designing anything yourself, then this course will surely enhance your knowledge

  4. You want to design a environment friendly home for yourself ? Then you can learn the fundamentals and have a better informed discussion with your architect

Course Reviews

"Another great course from EDS Global!"

-Darren Grant

"Very clearly explained, paedagogical and highly aesthetical. A good knowledge refresher and definitely a great learning tool. Thank you and congratulations!"

-Alina Dulaurent

"Good refresher info"

-Andres Escobar

"Excellent information in simple/basic form"

-Gerald Lefever