SUN-EARTH: How to Use Solar and Climactic Energies by Richard L. Crowther

SUN-EARTH: How to Use Solar and Climactic Energies

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Despite an awkward format (pages twice as wide as they are long), a selfcongratulatory air, and quirks of typography and illustration, this book comes off very well as a basic primer on solar energy and practical design. The collaboration of a group of architects who have specialized in solar energy-designed buildings, the book effectively summarizes The Problem (fossils, fuels, nuclear power, economy) and the state of the art of alternate energy schemes. Short paragraphs of text are accompanied on every page by diagrams or illustrations that complement or amplify. Aesthetically they do not always please, but often they're on the mark. One is grateful, for example, to see at a glance what an undershot and what an overshot water wheel looks like. Or how the changing angle of the sun over the seasons can heat a room in winter but leave it in shade in summer. Especially nice is the chapter describing the design principles which made Indian pueblos, Rocky Mountain cabins, or a red New England barn or saltbox house clever conservators of energy and comfortable habitats for humans or animals. The book concludes with pages of practical tips on conserving energy in your present abode (including landscaping, mulching, and other site details) as well as exemplary models of solar housing, mostly in the Southwest. The primer approach, which assumes little knowledge yet provides enough detail, makes the book suitable for a wide audience--students, householders, designers, those in the building trades.

Pub Date: April 7th, 1978
Publisher: Scribners