an energy efficient free-form glass structure A competition entry explores the possibilities of the glasshouse of the 21st century. The latest techniques in glass technology, computer modelling and CNC generate a freely formed glass roof as dramatic and exciting as the great glasshouses of the 19th century. It questions the perceived surface nature, form and energy performance of a glasshouse. The project proposed a spatial skin composed of a double layer of double-curved interlocking cast glass tiles separated by curved steel trusses, supported by steel posts on a four metre grid. A separate 'box' section houses the more private functions like bathrooms and bedrooms. Sustainable features include walls and roofs of glass or silica; an outer layer of photo-electrochemical or PEC glass that produces electricity; an inner layer of electrochromic or 'smart-glass' that can change from translucent to opaque in response to climactic conditions; a double skin that generates insulation; natural cross-ventilation via movable glass walls and openable windows; a stack effect that draws cooler air from outside in; and roof water collected in an underwater tank. An architectural experiment. A marvellous light-filled space.
Client: Undisclosed Location: Japan Status: Competition, 2001