Maeno-san, a doctorial student who graduates this March has taken a duel position working with the Iide town government and post-doc at Nihon University. His doctorial research dealt with developing sustainable local community energy systems utilizing mainly biomass. We visited a demonstration “green” home in Iide which utilizes radiant floor heating and a pellet boiler. Adjacent to the home is an insulated “ice house” where packed snow and perishable goods are stored. Within the ice house is a “cold exchange” coil which connects to the home’s radiant floor piping, and in summer can act as an air conditioning system.
This is an insulated storage facility, divided roughly in half, and located adjacent to several large greenhouses. Snow is packed in one half the building while perishable goods are stored in the other half. This eliminates the need for summer refrigeration.