NCKU Reveals New Sustainable Floating House Design

NCKU floating house design

National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) revealed a new unique floating house design during the Conference on Taijian Floating Green House and Sustainable Energy Strategies. The Research Center for Energy Technology and Strategy (RCETS) at NCKU has been working on a sustainable and rotating amphibious house design which is to be built in one year.

NCKU visiting expert Bart van Bueren is leading this research project. He has been working at NCKU for  3 years, and previously lived in the Netherlands where he specialized in water architecture.

When constructed, this building will be the first house to float on a fish farm in Taiwan and even the world’s first floating house that has been designed and engineered to rotate around a vertical axes to optimize energy performance.

Dutch visiting student Lars van Oort calculated that the building generates 11% additional solar energy because of the rotation of the whole building. In fact, the large solar-panel roof generates 3-4 times more energy than the building needs, so this building is not energy-neutral, but has a surplus of energy to provide to other buildings!

Moreover, a rotating building has several advantages. Bart van Bueren said, “The wind in Tainan varies in direction, so especially at night the two large openings of the building can align with the wind to get optimal wind ventilation; this is also an energy saving measure.”

“Even shading of the outdoor space can be optimized by rotating the building. When you live in the house and want to change the view, just simply push one button on your smart phone and the view can follow a pretty bird or sunset,” he added.

The international research team includes two Dutch: Bart van Bueren and Lars van Oort; one American, Rodney Matsuoka and seven Taiwanese Yen-Chung Chen, Wan-Chien Lin, Chung-Wen Wu, Ko-Min Hsueh, Cheng-Jung Rong, Chen I and Chen-Cheng Jung Min. Together they work on the design, structure, waste water treatment, building physics, energy optimization, building codes and business case, all aspects need to be integrated.

Ultimately, a demonstration house will be built as an example of housing that can have a positive impact to its environment, in terms of energy production, symbioses with the fish-production, sustainability and economic benefits for the community.

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This post was prepared by Solar Thermal Magazine staff.

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