Tag: off-grid

Inhabitat.com, one of the worlds most foremost websites for sustainable design innovation, eco architecture and green building, has featured our project, House Wessels. This is thanks to the innovative integration of the solar panels into the traditional thatch roof. The house, situated near Tofo in Mozambique, is entirely off-grid, reliant on solar power for for electricity and water heating, and a borehole for water.

See

http://www.inhabitat.com/awe-inspiring-thatched-mozambique-home-is-draped-in-solar-panels/

2007

Building contractor: Pine Homes

The house was designed for comfortable beach living, to maximise sea views to the south and out to the bay and point to the southwest, and to allow for maximum penetration of winter sunlight from the north. Horizontal forms and gently sloping mono-pitch roofs resonate with the gently sloping and undulating form of the landscape. To minimise visual impact up from the coast, the major portion of the south façade is shaded, and the colour palette was chosen to blend in with the vegetation and sand.

The house has split levels, which allow it to step down the slope following the contours of the site. Appropriate responses sought to resolve the issues of north light from behind the house, the prevailing winds, and maximising views include covered outdoor deck areas to both the north and the south of the house, and elongating the plan form on an east west axis.

The house is ‘off-grid’ and power is produced by photovoltaic panels, with a battery pack and inverter, and a silent running generator providing backup power should there not be sufficient sunlight for several days. Hot water is heated by means of a Vacuum Tube solar panel, and is circulated by a small pump also powered by a photovoltaic panel. The sewerage has been split into grey and black water and the plan is to recycle the grey water for re-use. Rainwater is harvested from the roof, with all the downpipes leading to horizontal storage tanks fitted below the house.

PUBLISHED

SA Timber Homes & Projects, Issue 11, 1/2008  House Orban