An ideal instrument for achieving nZEBs


“Erich-Kästner-Grundschule”, Leipzig: Primary school built to Passivhaus standard | Movable large slats made of colored rib mesh | Slat tracking based on the sun’s position creates an ideal room climate

The possibility of planning and assessing efficient projects in a reliable way is what makes PHPP an ideal planning tool for the implementation of nZEBs (Nearly Zero-Energy Buildings) or other buildings optimized for low energy consumption. Proven successful over many years, this calculation method for Passivhaus buildings, the minimal low energy demand which already meets the definition of a nZEB, is also useful for the calculation of very low energy buildings which are now being strived for across Europe and worldwide. The PHPP does not only offer the possibility of precisely calculating energy demand; renewable energy resources can also be integrated into the planning process and the overall efficiency of a building in the future can be assessed. PHPP therefore continues to be an ideal planning tool for the implementation of Passivhaus buildings, nZEBs and other energy efficient buildings.

PHPP_zaglavni_logoPHPP 9 consists of three new and important features, which make it an ideal instrument for achieving nZEBs


Energy efficient concepts are becoming more and more diverse, resulting in the increased need for the ability to assess and compare diverse design or implementation variants of a project – not just with reference to efficiency outcomes but also with regard to cost-effectiveness. This need has been met by PHPP 9! It allows the input of variants with completely different efficiency parameters within a single PHPP file. The results of the different variants are calculated in parallel so that the effects of these parameters can be easily compared. Comparisons of the cost-effectiveness of different variants can be carried out in a separate worksheet. Different steps of a building refurbishment may thus also be input into a single PHPP file. In this way, it possible to depict improved efficiency due to each refurbishment step, and to enter and asses long-term modernization projects in a facilitated manner.


Planning Passivhaus buildings or highly efficient EnerPHit retrofits with the new PHPP 9 puts a reasonable demand on experienced users with the relevant background knowledge. For those who are less familiar with the energy balanciing tool, or are not at least familiar with all the calcultion methods in the different calculation worksheets, a system of information has been developed which displays the previous warning message following a uniform logic, combining them in a new worksheet created for this purpose. In a comprehensible manner, users are informed about the places where incorrect or incomplete input need to be reviewes or where input data does not seem plausible and has to be rechecked.


The energy sector is experiencing rapid change worldwide, with the objective of a sustainable supply of energy. A planning tool like PHPP must be able to perform assessment of a building on this basis, because most of the energy demand of the building will coincide with the time when renewable energies will predominate. It therefore makes sense to perform assessment of the energy demand of buildings that are planned today based on such a future scenario. This consideration has been used in the PHPP 9 using the system of Primary Primary Energy Renewable (PER). As an alternative to the previously used evaluation method based on the non-renewable primary energy factors (PE), buildings can now be assessed according to the new system of renewable primary energy. The PHPP 9 also uses the Passivhaus classes resulting from this assessment, which allow assessment of the building’s efficiency taking into account the interplay of energy efficiency and renewable energy generation. The PHPP thus already makes it possible to design tomorrow’s buildings today, in a future proof way.

PHPP 9 was presented at the 19th. International Passive House Conference(Leipzig; April, 2015). The German Version is already available. The English version is expected in September 2015. The PHPP 9 introductory text is an excerpt form the introductory part of the Workshop PHPP9 & designPH, delivered by Passivhaus Institute, and held at the 19th International Passive House Conference.
In context of the SEEDpass project, partner organizations will by the end of the year 2015. input chosen Passivhaus building(s) from their own countries, as regional example buildings into the PHPP. In this way, further upcoming PHPP education in each of the partner countries  will reflect local and regional building practice and climate specifics.

A passivhaus is a nearly Zero Energy Building (nZEB), but a nZEB is not necessarily a passivhaus!