ALTERNATIVE  Solar  HOUSING

 

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Alternative, cost effective, practical, energy efficient solar housing designs use commonly available building materials that support a sustainable lifestyle. Buckminster_Fuller's  concept of "Doing more with less." applies to the geodesic dome. The geodesic sphere has the largest internal volume with the smallest external surface area. The stability of interconnected triangles results in a self supporting  super structure that's synergistic. Unfortunately standard construction materials do not come in the shape of triangles so there is much waste involved in real construction projects... AND geodesic roofs are difficult to make water tight and living space arrangements, and other issues limit the popularity of geodesic shelters..

   

Conventional houses have a rectangular frame with a pitched roof. If the roof  happens to be oriented in a southerly direction some of the household heating and power requirements could be satisfied with solar energy applications, but of course most houses are not designed with the sun in mind.

Buckminster Fuller has always been a architectural hero of mine and I believe he would have eventually realized that a close relative of the geodesic come called the "cube-octahedron "could have easily been incorporated into the residential housing market.

 

With a little work a "Cubeoctahedron" could be framed to have a large flat surface oriented to harvest sunlight. As a matter of fact an A frame could be added to the cube octahedron to increase the living space and heat collection area.

 

 

 

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Solar housing alternatives are only bounded by our imagination. As long as your solar home has a well insulated solid foundation and well insulated interior walls, and a large surface oriented toward the sun and a large heat storage area isolated from the area of heat collection energy independence is not only a present day possibility but also a future necessity. 

 

It is possible to live in harmony with nature and put more sunshine into our lives, but the transition from an oil based economy into a sun based economy will not be easy.  In the words of Lao-tzu "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."















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