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Tom Ross/Dezeen

This Australian Prefab Home Generates More Energy Than It Uses

FIONA MACDONALD
24 FEBRUARY 2015

What's being called the world's first carbon-positive prefabricated house has been unveiled in Melbourne, Australia, and we really want one.

Created by Australian manufacturing company ArchiBlox, the prefab homes can be ordered, built and delivered, ready to move in within 12 to 28 weeks. The aim is to provide a simple, affordable and stylish way to help people greatly reduce their carbon footprint.

 

The one-bedroom prototype features edible garden walls, rooftop solar panels, a sunroom and rainwater recycling. It's estimated that over its lifespan, the Archi+ Carbon Positive House will generate more energy than it took to build, and will offer the same environmental benefit as planting 6,095 native Australian trees.

"Archi+ Carbon Positive Houses will make significant contributions within society by addressing the increasing levels of carbon emissions and the high levels of embodied energy that come with the construction of a standard home," the company told Dezeen.

Despite the compact layout, which you can see in the floor plan below, the wood and big, open windows manage to make the home seem pretty spacious and light-filled. 

Worlds-First-Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox dezeen 2 1000ArchiBlox

But although it looks pretty sleek, every aspect of the 75-square-metre home has been cleverly designed to save energy. The house is naturally cooled, using in-ground 'cool tubes' that pull cool air from the Earth and circulate it around the house.

The fully sealed property is also designed to face north, with a double-glazed sunroom that forms a buffer of warm air that will help heat the home in winter, and protect it from the harsh sunlight in summer.

From above, the roof is insulated with grassy plants, and it generates electricity through a solar panel on the roof.

"We have five kilowatts of solar power on the roof, edible gardens within the house itself, so it can be a bit self-sufficient for food production... green sliding walls," architect Bill McCorkell told Simon Johanson from the Sydney Morning Herald at the start of the month. "The whole house has been designed to maximise solar gain. There are no fans, it's all just naturally ventilated, cooled and heated."

Although it's more expensive than a regular prefab house, with prices starting at A$260,000, it's generally whole lot cheaper and easier than trying to design and build your own carbon positive house from scratch.

See more pictures of the design below. So, when can we move in?

Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox-9Tom Ross/Dezeen

Worlds-First-Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox dezeen 1 1000ArchiBlox

Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox-8Tom Ross/Dezeen

Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox-10Tom Ross/Dezeen

Carbon-Positive-House-by-ArchiBlox-11Tom Ross/Dezeen

Sources: ArchiBlox, Dezeen, InhabitatThe Sydney Morning Herald