I really like the homes featured on Zero Energy Designs’ portfolio page. One home in particular, the TechVille Concept Home, caught my eye. It’s strikingly modern and absolutely incredible. It’s the kind of you home you see in movies … except it’s off-grid, healthy, water-efficient, and super smart. ZED designed this 4500 sf concept home as the first of two thousand planned residences in a modern village in Akodo Ise, Nigeria. TechVille has passive and active cooling, PV system, on demand hot water, air exchange system, dehumidification system, low- and no-VOC materials, abundant natural light, rainwater capture, greywater system, and smart home technology.
The design of TechVille prioritized three main goals:
- Utilize security concerns to provide flood protection and ocean views
- Allow natural light without heating up the interior and blocking interior views
- Employ architectural zoning in conjunction with the mechanical control systems and passive cooling strategies to minimize energy use
The red "sleeping tube" is super insulated and can be separated from the rest of the home to minimize the mechanical cooling load. Plus, the extended portion of the tube blocks direct solar gain while still allowing natural light into the interior.
The other half of the home, or the "light box," features glass walls with a louvered skin to, again, bring in natural light without the heat.
ZED seems to follow a similar strategy with all their homes designs. Every wall, window, overhang, etc., is perfectly calculated to minimize energy, and only after that, do they then proceed to use solar PV or some other form of green energy to take them the rest of the way to net zero energy. Conserve first, use green for the rest.
Rendering credits: Zero Energy Designs.