Southwest Alaska home deemed ‘tightest’ in the world
March 14, 2013
By Carey Restino | The Bristol Bay Times: They say necessity is the mother of all invention, so it should come as no surprise that an Alaskan has built arguably the tightest house in the world. The home, deemed the world’s tightest by the World Record Academy, can be found in Dillingham, a town of about 2,300 in Southwest Alaska, where it precipitates more than half the time, has temperatures dipping into the single digits for much of the winter and heating fuel prices hovering just below $6 a gallon.
You won’t find any big picture windows, but that’s OK with Tom Marsik and his wife, Kristin Donaldson, who have spent the past two years building the home. What you find instead is a home with the lowest air exchanges per hour rating ever recorded and publicized. The air in their home exchanges at a rate of .05 air changes per hour.
The home has been held up as an example of what energy efficient construction techniques could do to lower the astronomical cost of heating homes in rural Alaska. While many communities wrestle with the economic constraints of high energy costs, Marsik, an assistant professor of sustainable energy at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Bristol Bay Campus, used his knowledge about energy efficient homes to build his own.