The Villa Solar was officially opened on 17 June last. Close to the River Manzanares in Madrid, it contains the houses competing to win Solar Decathlon Europe 2010, the biggest sustainable architecture competition, held for the first time outside the USA. One of them, the FAB LAB HOUSE, is a project developed by universities of twenty different nationalities under the umbrella of the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IaaC) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), with the collaboration of twenty-three companies including Endesa, Schneider Electronic and Visoren as the main sponsors, and Nani Marquina, Vinçon and Santa & Cole as collaborators on the adaptation of the interior design.
The houses, which can be visited until 27 June, are not prototypes, but rather completed homes in which everything works with solar power. They are all modular and focus especially on passive energy-saving measures, such as good insulation, taking advantage of air currents and natural light, and filters and screens to protect from the sun.
The Fab Lab House is the first smart home to generate more energy than it consumes, in addition to allowing food to be obtained. State-of-the-art digital manufacturing machines were used to build it. As Vicente Guallart, Director of the IAAC says, “we printed our house, we didn’t build it”. The competition will reward the most energy-efficient, sustainable and comfortable house, although it will also consider as positive that they are attractive and can be industrialized, and that they are simple to assemble, dismantle and transport.
Santa & Cole has collaborated adapting the inside letting some elements such as the CIRIO lamp, the latest design of Antoni Arola for Santa & Cole, and whose light source is made up of three LEDs with a 24V DC power supply; a set of Belloch table and chairs, designed by Lagranja; and an Ibiza armchair, a design of Germán Rodríguez Arias.