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First ‘Living Building’ To Be Powered By Algae Growing On Its Facade

Living building – Germany

A new “living building” in Germany will provide renewable energy and shade with algae growing on its facade.

Designed for the International Building Exhibition in Hamburg by Splitterwerk Architects, the BIQ House will be a zero-energy home covered in algae. Once completed, will be the first real-life test for this unique system of powering homes.

The bio-reactor facade will power the building by capturing solar thermal heat and producing biomass that can be harvested and used accordingly. When the sun is exceptionally bright, the algae will grow faster to provide shade.

The building is scheduled to be completed in March 2013, and will be readily available as an opportunity for engineers, builders, and scientists to explore as a more sustainable solution for how we power homes and other buildings. Aside from the functionality and practicality of it, the visually appealing style is likely to be what draws people in. That and the humblebrag that they’re super–eco, since everyone will know just by looking at the place.

Would you live in a home covered in algae if it provided clean energy and shade?

Image: Arup Germany GmbH

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  • Anonymous

    Actually you want the algae for powering transport, too valuable to just use it in the building. The building itself can be power by electricity for any source (either internal or from the grid).