The project explores the possibilities of active thermally insulated façades in architecture. Its central outcome is the production of the ActiveHouse, a building which incorporates moveable solid insulated shutters as well as an innovative open source system that both monitors climate and occupation patterns, and controls the shutter operation, light levels and heating of the building's interior.
The ActiveHouse aims to resolve the conflict between large windows providing natural light and the simultaneous loss of heat. Through this novel system of sensing, actuating and control, the shutters close when temperature or occupancy levels drop. The system has the capacity to learn individual preferences and anticipate user needs.
The project builds on an earlier temporary building, the DEI (deployable external insulation) Pavilion, which was seen by over 5,000 people and raised awareness of this area of research and acted as a test prototype for the ActiveHouse.