The current trends with regarding facades are a phenomenon which deserves this separate chapter. For this reason, today we will discuss different dynamic facades as follows.
We could say that in the last few years, an additional function has been added to the well-known aesthetic, waterproof and insulating (thermal and acoustic) facades’ functions, that is the minimization of energy consumption. This is not exactly a new function, but rather an extension of the previous. Either through passive shading and ventilation, or through complex dynamic systems, the need to control a building’s interior environment in order to reduce our reliance on air conditioning, heating systems or artificial lightning, has led to the development of the buildings’ exteriors, made possible by technology.
The Homeostatic Building Facade devised by Decker Yedon is an experimental prototype, which reacts to the temperature provided to the facade. The material of which it is composed functions as an artificial muscle, modifying its own shape to prevent solar heat gain. Besides, it is low consumption and localized control
On this video you will be able to observe how it works.
Another example of a dynamic facade is the high technology shading system Sunbreak, recently built by the firm NBBJ.
Based on Santiago Calatrava’s garage door design of 1985, it offers users the possibility of a total environment control thanks to a mobile app available for Android and iPhone. Usually, it folds or unfolds a series of sunshades depending on the time of day. However, through sensors, it could react to the presence of people in the room or the proximity of clouds.
More information about Sunbreak on this video.
Undoubtedly, a perfect example of a dynamic facade that is already into practice is the Al Bahar Towers by AEDAS studio. Inspired by the mashrabiya, a traditional Islamic shading element, and by origami shapes, the geometrical elements not only protect automatically from solar heat gain, but they also offer a unique visual impact. And additionally, it also uses renewable energy from photovoltaic panels.
Observe the functioning of those spectacular structures on this video.
Finally, if on the previous examples of dynamic facades they worked as living organisms, the next one it is, in fact, a living organism. The BIQ House project, created by Arup, has a facade made of algae, whose bio-reactors allows them to grow faster under the sunlight to increase internal shading. Besides, those bio-reactors produce biomass and solar energy, with the result that the building can be powered with its own energy.
Discover how this living organism works on this video.