The Melbourne’s Queen Victoria market is the site where the current Passive House Standard for low-energy buildings is being put to the test. The event is called “The Ice Box Challenge”. The idea is to take two 720kg blocks of ice and put them into two different structures. One that was built by the Passive House Standard and other that was built by the Australian Building Code.

The ice is going to be inside the structures for 12 days to see how long it is going to last. The event started on February 21 and it will end on March 3.

After the first temperature measure in the afternoon, there was already difference of 9°C. Outside temperature in Melbourne was 23°C, while inside the Passive House box was 9°C and in the Australian Building Code box was 18°C.

The idea behind this experiment is to show the benefits of passive house construction and design. The Australian Passive House Association organized the event with the support of local construction and design industry, Queen Victoria Markets and City of Melbourne.

Passive House Standard is an international standard for low energy structures. The design of these buildings enables them to use up to 90 per cent energy less, while still having good air quality and indoor ventilation.