that the BIQ House, which contains 15 apartments,
clearly demonstrates that integrating algae systems
into building services is perfectly feasible. Currently the
system is being fine-tuned to run at high efficiency.
This technical monitoring is progressing well and at the
same time the team is monitoring user acceptance –
critical to marketing the project successfully.
The building is almost fully occupied and the
inhabitants are positive about the façade and living in
the BIQ House. This is a great relief, because none of
the team had any real knowledge of how people would
perceive and interact with a green bubbling façade.
The team believes this to be just the beginning of using
the biochemical processes of fast-growing and highly
responsive micro-organisms in smart and adaptable
building envelopes; a first step towards the vision of
the external skin of buildings becoming fully synergetic
with the otherwise disparate natural and technical
cycles of human environments.
‘In the future we need to develop buildings which don’t
just offer shelter and minimise energy consumption but
also try to deliver answers to how we provide the urban
environment with energy, water and better air quality.
The SolarLeaf façade is an outstanding example here in
that it generates energy without taking up additional
space. This project is especially valuable because for the
first time we have an application that actually works in
an existing building.’
l A total of 356 submissions to the Zumtobel Group
Awards were judged by an international jury that
included architects Kunlé Adeyemi, Yung Ho Chang,
Winy Maas and Kazuyo Sejima; Brian Cody, chair
of the Institute of Buildings and Energy, Graz
University of Technology; Ulrich Schumacher, CEO
of the Zumtobel Group and Rainer Walz, head of the
sustainability and infrastructure systems competence
center at the Fraunhofer ISI Karlsruhe.
l www.ssc-hamburg.de/ SOLAR LEAF
PROJECT COSTS: N (US$4
PROPER TY SIZE: METRES
BIO FAÇADE SIZE: E METRES
GROSS FLOOR AREA: UARE
SIZES OF UNI TS: RE
ENERGY STANDARD: HOUSE