The American University of Cairo has entered its <a href="http://www.slide-s.com/welcome-page">Sustainable, Livable & Interactive Design</a> (Slide-s) House into the upcoming <a href="http://inhabitat.com/tag/solar-decathlon-europe/">European Solar Decathlon</a> in Madrid. As the first entrant from North Africa, the students have created a solution to li
ving in hot and arid conditions combining ancient techniques with modern design principles. The inner glass hub of the living area is surrounded by a movable latticework screen based on traditional Egyptian design that aims to maximize passive cooling in summer and solar gain in winter. A PV array on the roof provides for the home's energy requirements and a grey-water recovery system reduces water use. Could this design help solve some of the day-to-day problems of living in North Africa?
The latticework outer body interlocks using designs based on ancient stonework found in Egypts classical structures and slides apart in a matchbox fashion.
The main building material used is a reinforced polymer made at AUC consisting of a composite of waste wood and plastic recovered from the local region, adding to the sustainable philosophy behind the design.
Slides side view
To maximize passive heating and cooling, the sliding screen remains closed throughout the summer.
Slides summer winter
Natural light enters the Slide-s house via the latticework but the living space is largely protected from the hot sun and a simple ventilation outlet allows the hot air to escape through the roof.
slides tech sketch
In winter the screen is opened during daylight hours maximising solar gain which is supplemented by heat absorbtion in thermal mass flooring. The absorbed heat is then utilised at night when the screen is closed again to keep the living space warm.
slides blue print
The simple but elegant design for the living area easily incorporates the requirements for a pleasant and relaxing abode.