Gallery: Students in Alberta Create a Sustainable Modular Home for Fami...

The bathroom features a living wall, which helps detoxify the space. The wall is fed by a skylight that allows the sun in.
The bathroom features a living wall, which helps detoxify the space. The wall is fed by a skylight that allows the sun in.

Borealis consists of parts that are easily assembled and can be moved by truck to areas that aren’t always easy to reach. A steel structure makes up the skeleton of the home, with R-40 walls acting as the skin to  keep the chilly winter out. Each module consists of central module, which contains the service portion of the home, including a kitchen, bathroom, dining and utility room. On either side of that module are two separate home areas with bedrooms, living space one side and an office on the other. When privacy is needed, these areas can be closed off using a sliding door that enters into the kitchen.

The home is powered by a 10 kw photovoltaic solar array on the roof. In the bathroom there is a living wall with an array of plants that detoxify the air. The mechanical room maintains temperature throughout the house and is responsible for collecting and distributing energy. The system even collects waste heat to use for dehumidification and heating.

The exterior design was created to live in harmony with its surroundings and reflect the beauty of the Northern Lights with its geometric shape. The home is part of the 2013 US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon, and construction on the home began in mid-May. You can follow the team’s progress on their own “Blog-ealis.”

+ Team Alberta


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1 Comment

  1. Diane Menke July 3, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    The appearance of the building is very nice. How are the skins attached to the frame since it mentions the frame can be dismantled to me moved = broken air seal. The only thing I don’t like is the living wall in the bathroom. And you never mentioned cost to build run or how you will manage waste or water. A septic system and a well in a remote area can easily cost $40K. Add the lot + the building and other utilities….thats all important information to understand when weighing a project’s feasibility.

    Diane Menke
    Myers Constructs Inc.

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