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2003 Solar Style House in Chatham

The Sterling Solar Model B

Bill Sterling designed the Model B Solar Style House for a typical family-oriented

three-bedroom house plus a main floor study/guest bedroom & bath suite. It can

have a walk-out basement option if the site slope allows for upper and lower entry

levels. The Model B solar style design is a


shift from the craftsman

style look of Model

A to a Cape Cod

country farm




derivative of the Nickerson farm house

of Chatham, MA. Instead of sun shading

expressed into the roof and deck structure, this

design starts with a stretched skin look on all four

sides with sun shading elements added on.

This ”machine for collecting solar energy” faces

the main glass wall directly south, faces moderate amounts of glass east and west (7%)

with solar screening by means of louvered wooden shades reminiscent of early New

England window shutters. There is minimal glass facing north (under 5%).

Sustainable specifications include the latest

details of super-insulated walls, thermal

breaks, air tight construction and potential

for high efficiency mechanical systems,

approaching net zero energy design if


Sterling concludes about the Model B Solar 

House, “This style maintains the character of a New England neighborhood houses while

embracing the principles of 21st century sustainable design. This is done by careful

placement of windows for solar orientation and addition of wooden slat shading devices

that are consistent with late 19th-century shingle style ornamentation.”

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