Solar Heated Experimental Dwelling 1977 - 1979

This was designed as an educational and research project for students at the Sheffield University School of Architecture. I designed it as a live project to build a demonstration building with materials donated by local suppliers. It was built in the end mainly by 5 students working in their 'year out'. First year students also came for one afternoon a week for a period. After the building was completed it was monitored with the help of the department of Physics in the University. One student physicist was employed to write a program for a PET microcomputer to read temperature sensors throughout the building. He also helped to build the electronics to do the monitoring. The results were analysed and helped in the creation of a computer program to model buildings dynamically called SPIEL. The further development of SPIEL was aided by contracts with the European Solar Energy Laboratory at Ispra in Italy, and a period working at the Ecole Poytechnique Federal in Lausanne, Switzerland.


The building and related designs for house types which I did, were entered for the Misawa Homes International Competion in Japan in which I won 3rd prize. This project gave me the opportunity for exploring the broader implications for urban design of these bioclimatic ideas. (see Competition).