Virginia Tech garnered the first price for LUMENHAUS, their design of cutting edge responsive architecture. The 10-day inaugural Solar Decathlon Europe competition featured 17 inventive designs from around the world. The competition challenged the designs to “clearly demonstrate that solar houses can be built without sacrificing energy efficiency or comfort, and that they can be both attractive and affordable.”
Designed as a modern day pavilion and inspired by Mies Van der Rohe’s Farnsworth house, the LUMENHAUS successfully created open flowing spaces connecting occupants visually to their surrounding environment. More photographs and a detailed description about LUMENHAUS following the break.
The house integrates the latest technologies and architectural techniques such as “eclipsis” shades and insulation panels that are autonomously deployed to respond accordingly to weather conditions.
The zero-energy home is powered by the sun, and also incorporated passive energy systems, radiant heating, and renewable and/or recyclable sources. The completely self-sufficient pavilion was designed to encourage energy efficiency while not compromising the users comfort.
Electronic systems can be monitored by an iPhone app, and LEDs, photovoltaic panels, and glass walls for maximum sun exposure, are also incorporated into the LUMENHAUS. The design also provides flexibility with plug-in stairs and entryways.
“Our design research facilities and programs are some of the best in the world, as shown by our victory in the Solar Decathlon Europe,” said Joseph Wheeler, Associate Professor of Architecture at Virginia Tech and lead project coordinator. “By using past competitions as the building blocks to improve our research in design and green technology, our students, who designed and built these homes, have been able to develop a portfolio of energy-efficient, state-of-the-art designs that not only help us to win competitions, but also allow them to study how these homes will fit into the mainstream market. ”
“The technologies available in LUMENHAUS are meant to not only demonstrate to consumers and builders what is possible in energy-efficient, solar living but also to show how functional and beautiful these types of homes can be,” said Robert Dunay, Director of Virginia Tech’s Center for Design Research. “By aligning the architectural and engineering aspects of design, we were able to conceive a home that can work in perfect harmony to create an excellent living experience. We hope to take what we’ve learned through these competitions and use it to create a wider range of market-viable solar homes.”
Lead Project Coordinator: Joseph Wheeler Director, Center for Design Research: Robert Dunay Associate Dean for Research: Robert Schubert Assistant Professor, Marketing: Jane Machin Associate Professor, Computer Science: Denis Gracanin Director, Center for Energy Systems Research: Michael von Spakovsky Professor, Architecture: Mario Cortes Assistant Professor, Building Construction: Andrew McCoy Professor, Landscape Architecture: Ben Johnson Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering: Virgilio Centeno Associate Professor, Architecture: Jim Jones Associate Professor, Industrial and Systems Engineering: Brian Kleiner Adjunct Faculty, Architecture: Clive Vorster Student Leaders: Alden Haley, Corey McCalla, D. B. Clark, Chris Taylor Architecture Team: Allison Ransom, Mathew Vibberts, Florence Graham, Megan Sunderman, Christian Truitt, Zachary Bacon, Travis Rookstool, Casey Reeve, Osamu Osawa Electrical Engineering Team: Brian Zaremski, Justin Reyes, Paul Gherardi, Damion Logan, Kenny Johnson, Danny Slover Mechanical Engineering Team: Brendan Wayman, Bridget Beurhle, Tony Fuchs, Matthew McDaniel Communications Team: Christine Burke, Stacy Adamson, Jen Neuville, Lauren Castoro, Matt Shuba, Marissa Ferrara, Kristin Washco, Mike Payne, Dawn Roseberry Landscape Architecture: Joseph Paredes, Autumn Visconti, Joshua Franklin Computer Science Team: Kenny Neal, Patrick Sheridan, Peter Radics Safety Team: Irene John, Kara Vonder Reith Extended Team: Derek Belcher, George Cincala, Luis Mantilla, Nathan Melenbrink, Jeff Stolz, Ryan Chamberlain, Alexandra Militano, Peter Nettelbeck, Timothy Owen, Tofan Rafati, Rehanna Rojiani, Mike Sutjipto, Evan Arbogast, Bryan Murray, Sujit Ekka, Nick Wilson, Andrew Williams, Alicia Nolden, Kent Hipp, Autumn Visconti, John May, Moly Malby, Margy Bozicevich, Tanner Versage, Stephen Talley, Logan Yengst, Jon Runge, Justin Burnett, Kyle Butta, Ben Turpin, Dan Sargent, Jacob Bruch, Lindsey Jones, Gabriel Oliver, Kevin Schafer, Jonathan Grinham, John Black, Liz Haro, Greg Wilds, Kevin Jones, Justin Reyes, Jerry Case, Florence Graham, Corey Akers, Diana Sullivan, Drew Dunsten, Clay Copeland, Anton Davelstein, Vidya Gowda, Jamal K. A., Kongkun Charoenvisal, Railesha Tiwari,Danny King, Naif Altahlaw, Meredith Baber, Nathan King, Caroline Wallace, Paykon Sarmadi, David Cotter, Chelsea Berg, Beth Sasso, Peter Dunne, Paul Toler, Jenn Hare, Ian Buchanan, Zach Taylor, Wiley Horn, Jacob Chance, Lauren Cline, Nicholas Denney, Kyle Cooper, Michael Gult