Technically, Heat Does Not Rise

Green Building

Technically, Heat Does Not Rise

© Kumiko Murakami Campos


Heat rises.

The adage is one of the cornerstones of passive environmental systems in buildings. The typical anecdote is the hot-air balloon. By using a burner to thrust heated air into the (typically) nylon envelope, the balloon fills with less buoyant gas that lifts the it and its passenger(s) into the air.

But what if I told you that this oversimplified statement actually misrepresents the characteristics of heat?

The truth is – technically, heat does not rise.

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