Plastic waste pop-up pavilion rethinks recycling in the Netherlands

May 25, 2017 by  
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Plastic waste takes on new life in the PET Pavilion, a temporary structure that popped up in a public park in Enschede, The Netherlands. Project.DWG and LOOS.FM designed the 227-square-meter ephemeral pavilion to spark dialogue on topics relating to recycling and sustainable building. The experimental pavilion serves as an educational gathering space and can be easily dismantled for relocation within a day. The pavilion bears draws inspiration from Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Farnsworth House with its steel framework and floor-to-ceiling transparent walls. Over 40,000 plastic bottles are sandwiched between the pavilion’s double-walled transparent corrugated sheets, creating a curtain of crumpled bottles that turn the pavilion into an “abstract lantern” at night. The elevated pavilion also includes a staircase and ramp covered with 25,000 bottle caps and a divider wall filled with 8,000 body wash containers. “It is really confronting when you encounter the huge piles of waste up close,” write the designers. “That’s something we wanted to work with. ‘Something’ became a pavilion with monumental walls of pet bottles. Dismountable and temporary, with the plot in loan. With a temporary structure you bypass complicated regulation. Society is changing. To build for eternity, is an empty claim. Temporality means freedom.” Related: Dissolvable bioplastic bags from Bali are safe enough to drink The PET pavilion is currently located in a temporary park on the grounds of the former Robson pajamas in Enschede. The building is used to host events, from talks to galleries, and also includes a bar and winter garden. The pavilion will be moved to an as yet undetermined site at the end of 2017. + Project.DWG + LOOS.FM Images via Project.DWG , art by Martin Oostenrijk, Jelle de Graaf, and André Boone

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Plastic waste pop-up pavilion rethinks recycling in the Netherlands

The prefab house of the future is made from recycled, reusable, and sustainable materials

May 5, 2017 by  
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This prefab home by Arup Associates is made from recycled, reusable and sustainably sourced materials . The Circular Economy Building was designed as a prototype for this year’s London Design Festival and built in only two weeks. The project revisits the archetypal house and reinvents it with refined prefab construction techniques and sustainable materials. The prefab clearly show its Circular Economy elements by revealing them visually– visitors can observe the layers of the envelope – including the demountable SIPS panels and the structural steel frame , which creates enables extension and future adaptation. The design aims to demonstrate that flexible, sustainable architecture can be highly compatible with a comfortable modern lifestyle. Related: Arup’s timber prefab Sky Believe in Better Building wins the 2014 Wood in Architecture Award The architects worked closely with Arup’s engineers to marry pleasant spatial solutions with sustainable building techniques. This informed the choice of finishes and fittings throughout the interior. Even the carpets, supplied by Desso on a take-back scheme, can be replaced when worn out and sustainably refurbished and reused . Related: London’s new Design Museum opens this week inside a renovated post-war modernist building The building’s superior acoustic performance is ensured by using an acoustic wall system built entirely from recycled plastic bottles . A high-tech automation system uses sensors to monitor the interior environment and adjust the skylights , blinds and lights. The building’s flat-pack construction utilizes custom-made panels standardized through several computational iterations. + Arup Associates Via v2com Photos by Simon Kennedy

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The prefab house of the future is made from recycled, reusable, and sustainable materials

Nissan is working on a new 340-mile-range electric car

May 5, 2017 by  
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Nissan basically put the electric car on the map when it introduced the Nissan Leaf, but in the last few years the Leaf has been overshadowed by the arrival of newer electric cars, like the Tesla Model S and most recently, the Chevy Bolt. The good news is that Nissan is close to releasing an all-new Nissan Leaf, which will be followed by another electric car with a driving range of around 340 miles. According to Japan’s Nikkei Automotive , the next Leaf will get a 43-percent better driving range, which will put it around 150 miles per charge. If that figure holds, the new Leaf will be able to drive further on one charge than the updated VW e-Golf, the BMW i3 and the Focus Electric. Unfortunately that driving range won’t match the Chevy Bolt or the upcoming Tesla Model 3, but Nissan has something else in the works. Related: The new Nissan Leaf will be able to drive autonomously on the highway The automaker is reportedly working on a different electric car, which will be able to travel over 340 miles on a single charge. The new electric car will arrive by 2020 and will borrow styling cues from the IDS concept picture here. The new EV’s cargo capacity and exterior dimensions will also be close to the Leaf. + Nissan Via Nikkei Automotive Images @Nissan

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Nissan is working on a new 340-mile-range electric car

Wind and solar-powered eco community to house 4,000 members of the Oglala Lakota Nation

May 5, 2017 by  
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The Thunder Valley Regenerative Community masterplan provides housing for some 4,000 people in the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation community in South Dakota . This eco-friendly, climate-adaptable community was designed from the ground up with local culture and values in mind, using sustainable technologies for solar , wind and geothermal energy. The Thunder Valley Regenerative Community is currently underway on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, which is home to the Oglala Lakota Nation. The project brought together the local community and several organizations and design studios around the idea of creating a visionary community design. Local community members worked together with the Oglala Lakota nonprofit organization Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation (CDC) , and architecture firms BNIM and Pyatt Studio , with support from KLJ Engineering and Studio NYL . Related: 8 ways to help the water protectors at the Standing Rock Reservation As the lead planner for the project masterplan, architecture firm BNIM designed the multifamily and mixed-used buildings and created a high-performance water collection and reuse system, wastewater treatment systems, and on-site solar, wind and geothermal energy generators. Related: Brad Pitt’s Make it Right delivers first 3 LEED Platinum homes The architects completed the first two buildings – the Thunder Valley Community Center and Guest House – both of which function as community gathering spaces . The first phase of the single family homes—by Pyatt Studio—is scheduled for completion this year. + BNIM + Pyatt Studio + KLJ Engineering + Studio NYL + Thunder Valley CDC

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Wind and solar-powered eco community to house 4,000 members of the Oglala Lakota Nation

Dibdo Francis Kr unveils 2017 Serpentine Pavilion with rain-gathering roof

February 21, 2017 by  
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Burkina Faso-born architect Diébédo Francis Kéré has been selected as this year’s designer of the Serpentine Gallery Pavilion —making him the first African architect of the annual pavilion. Kéré, who leads the Berlin-based practice Kéré Architecture, unveiled preliminary designs of a pavilion strongly influenced by the rural vernacular of his home country. Designed to mimic the functions and form of a large tree, the temporary pavilion will be topped by a large wooden disc that offers shelter and will help collect rainwater. Now in its 17th iteration, the annual Serpentine Pavilion commissions an international architect to build his or her first structure in London on the lawns of Kensington Gardens . Kéré draws from his experience in socially engaged and ecologically responsible design in his pavilion proposal that aims to connect visitors to nature, to Burkina Faso architecture, and with one another. The steel-framed pavilion is built mostly of wood and will be accessible via four separate entry points that lead to a central open-air courtyard. Related: BIG selected to design the 2016 Serpentine Pavilion Kéré wrote in his architect’s statement: “In Burkina Faso , the tree is a place where people gather together, where everyday activities play out under the shade of its branches. My design for the Serpentine Pavilion has a great over-hanging roof canopy made of steel and a transparent skin covering the structure, which allows sunlight to enter the space while also protecting it from the rain. Wooden shading elements line the underside of the roof to create a dynamic shadow effect on the interior spaces. This combination of features promotes a sense of freedom and community; like the shade of the tree branches, the Pavilion becomes a place where people can gather and share their daily experiences.” The pavilion’s design promotes natural ventilation for cooling in the summer. An oculus funnels collected rainwater from the roof to create a “spectacular waterfall effect” before it drains into a tank for reuse as park irrigation. The 2017 Serpentine Pavilion will be open to the public from June 23 to October 8, 2017. + Serpentine Galleries Images via Serpentine Galleries

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Dibdo Francis Kr unveils 2017 Serpentine Pavilion with rain-gathering roof

Ship-like Hidden Pavilion uses the surrounding forest like a protective envelope

February 15, 2017 by  
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This ship-like pavilion in Spain reconciles the openness of glass architecture and the need for privacy. Penelas Architects designed the Hidden Pavilion as a quiet retreat that protects its occupants not through the use of curtains or blinds, but by treating the surrounding forest as a kind of natural envelope. The pavilion is nestled in a forest glade just northwest of Madrid, Spain . Its isolated location allowed the architects to completely open up the building toward the surroundings and draw maximum natural light into its interior. Designed to become one with nature, the building incorporates an existing 200-year-old oak tree, along with younger trees, to grow through gaps in its terraced areas. Related: Kengo Kuma unveils “blossoming” glass and timber villas for Bali With a floor space of 753 square feet spread over two floors, the pavilion includes a veranda and a rooftop terrace that overlook the surrounding forest. Natural materials , steel and glass are combined to create a kind of industrial appearance of an ocean liner that, instead of oceans, navigates the lush landscapes of central Spain. + Penelas Architects Via New Atlas Photos by Miguel de Guzmán + Rocio Romero

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Ship-like Hidden Pavilion uses the surrounding forest like a protective envelope

Award-winning grass-covered pavilion in India constructed with over 1,000 recycled pallets

February 14, 2017 by  
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Over a thousand discarded shipping pallets went into the making of this partly planted, undulating pavilion in New Delhi. Local architecture firm M:OFA Studios drew inspiration from India’s ruins and their love of upcycling to create Pensieve, an award-winning experimental pavilion with a name inspired by the “memory basin” in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. The temporary installation served as an urban playground and public gathering space that inspired people to contemplate their surroundings. Built as part of India Design ID 2014, the Pensieve is no longer standing though it continues to be recognized in awards, such as its nomination in the Kohler Bold Design Awards 2016. Over 1,200 recycled pallets were stacked together in an asymmetrical shape inspired by the hundreds of stone ruins that dot the capital, where many locals used as playgrounds in their childhood. Compost added inside some of the open pallets was used as a growing medium for grass and other plants. Related: Charming Wine Shop Built with Repurposed Shipping Pallets Pops Up in Poland “The concept initiated from the basic idea of ‘fluid’ thoughts,” write the architects. “Built out of recycled wood , this pavilion was asked on the idea of unobstructed thoughts associated often with the children. The pavilion became a reminder of those simpler times, where the kids looked at the world beyond a 4 inch by 3 inch display screen in their hands.” The large 800-square-foot installation framed a public gathering space that also included solar-powered furniture that lit up when people sat on them and a hundred fiber-optic sculptures that used motion sensors to light up at night. + M:OFA Studios Images via M:OFA Studios

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Award-winning grass-covered pavilion in India constructed with over 1,000 recycled pallets

Prefabricated garden retreat snaps together in less than a week

February 10, 2017 by  
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If your dream garden look like something from a fantasy world, you’ll love this Dragonfly Pavilion built for a backyard in Hoboken, New Jersey. Built from sustainably harvested and FSC-certified Sapele mahogany and recycled aluminum, this beautifully intricate garden shed takes inspiration from the complex pattern of butterfly and dragonfly wings. New York-based CDR Studio Architects designed this prefabricated backyard retreat, which took less than one week to install. Prefabricated by SITU Fabrication , Dragonfly Pavilion is made with a recycled aluminum frame clad in Sapele lumber and large sections of glazing. A single timber bench is built into the interior while a laminated-tempered glass sits on the roof. The glazing is broken up by a gradient of complex geometric shapes, or cells, that give the structure its delicate, dragonfly wing-like appearance. “These cells are more than just aesthetically appealing,” write the architects. “Their shape and size respond directly to the forces acting on it.” Related: Glowing bamboo pavilion promotes ecological design in Hong Kong The wing-like pattern was derived from a computer-generated algorithm. Mosquito netting is also installed on the interior of the mahogany cells, giving the structure a second, inner skin. The Dragonfly Pavilion’s simple rectangular form allows for a variety of programs, from use as a yoga studio to a small dining area. The pavilion was prefabricated offsite and then reassembled onsite in less than one week. + CDR Studio Architects Photography by John Muggenborg

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Prefabricated garden retreat snaps together in less than a week

New material converts sunlight, heat, and movement into electricityat the same time

February 10, 2017 by  
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Like harnessing the power of the sun or getting a charge from physical movement, the conversion of ambient energy into electricity is getting pretty old hat. Tapping multiple sources simultaneously, on the other hand, is something else altogether. The secret was under our noses this whole time. While minerals known as perovskites have shown promise for extracting one or two types of energy concurrently, one particular member of that family leaves them in the shade by distilling sunlight, heat, and movement into electricity at once. Like all perovskites, KBNNO is ferroelectric in nature. This means it contains tiny electric dipoles, packed with positive charges on one end and negative charges on the other, according to scientists from University of Oulu , who described the material in the journal Applied Physics Letters this week. Changes in temperature coaxes these dipoles to shift, which in turn induces an electric current. Likewise, mechanical stress causes parts of the material to attract or repel charges, producing another current. KBNNO’s photovoltaic and ferroelectric properties have been the subject of prior research, but the Oulu study marks the first time anyone has evaluated properties relating to temperature and pressure. Previous studies also operated at temperatures hundreds of degrees below freezing, rather than above room temperature, as the latest experiments did. Related: Piezoelectric device harvests wasted heat energy from tech Still, there was one wrinkle: Although KBNNO proved “reasonably good” at generating electricity from heat and pressure, scientists didn’t think it quite measured up to its fellow perovskites—at least, not without some tinkering, say by preparing KBNNO with sodium to amplify certain piezoelectric or pyroelectric properties. “It is possible that all these properties can be tuned to a maximum point,” Yang Bai, who led the study, said in a statement. By next year, Bai and his team say they hope to construct a prototype of a multi-energy-harvesting device – one that could render batteries for portable devices obsolete. He said, “This will push the development of the Internet of Things and smart cities, where power-consuming sensors and devices can be energy sustainable”. + American Institute of Physics Via PhysOrg Photos by Arcadiuš and TimOve

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New material converts sunlight, heat, and movement into electricityat the same time

Desert Rain House in Oregon is one of the greenest homes in the world

February 10, 2017 by  
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There’s a new contender for the world’s greenest home: Desert Rain House in Bend, Oregon . Designed by Tozer Design , the LEED Platinum home recycles all its water, produces more power than it can use, and it is the first residential compound to be certified by the Living Building Challenge . Solar panels and a rainwater collection cistern help this super green home pioneer a new paradigm for sustainable family living. The five-building Desert Rain House boasts seriously environmentally friendly features. Human waste is composted thanks to a central composting system, and greywater is reused for irrigation via a constructed wetland. Natural and local materials comprise the elegant dwellings; reclaimed lumber and plaster made with local clay, sand, and straw are among the sustainable building materials utilized. Related: Kansas University students build net-zero home with LEED Platinum and Passive House certification Materials from old buildings that once occupied the site were repurposed for Desert Rain House, such as old stone salvaged from old foundations and used in concrete for patios. The team that built the home looked for ways to reduce their carbon footprint as much as possible. For example, instead of having a manufacturer ship them roofing panels, the team assembled roofing onsite from a large roll of steel. Red List-compliant sealants and finishes also make for a non-toxic environment. Indoors the air is clear: not only can the owners open large windows for air circulation, but a waste heat-capturing energy recovery ventilator also means fresh air continually wafts through the main residence. Three homes and two out-buildings add up to 4,810 square feet situated on 0.7 acres. Elliott Scott, who owns the home with his wife Barbara, said in a statement, “We can’t continue thinking we are building a better world by making a ‘less bad’ version of the world we have created. The Living Building Challenge forces us to think in terms of a new paradigm.” + Tozer Design + Desert Rain House Via International Living Future Institute and Curbed Images via Desert Rain House Facebook and Desert Rain House

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Desert Rain House in Oregon is one of the greenest homes in the world

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