Prefabcosm posts on Prefabcosmen-us Prefabcosm: taking an extended break <img src=''><br /> <p>Hello, Scott here. </p> <p>I continue to believe that prefab and modular homes should play an ever increasing role in the housing market. But with the ongoing economic troubles, the demand for new houses is not likely to support much innovation for awhile. </p> <p>As a company, we've always had several projects going at the same time. One of those is ramping up and needs more staff time, so it's time to halt our ongoing efforts at Prefabcosm. </p> <p>The site will remain; I hope it continues to serve as a useful resource. </p><br /> Fri, 16 Oct 2009 13:00:00 -0000 Strongbox system by Roig Associates <img src='/media/photos/2009/10/15/roig.jpg'><br /> <p>We recently received an email from Charles Roig of <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Roig-Associates/">Roig Associates</a> describing a project he has been working on for 10 years. Designed to withstand &quot;a direct hit from an EF5 tornado or a Category 5 hurricane&quot;, it is a housing system called the Strongbox. </p> <p>The company does not currently have a website, but according to an abstract he sent us, the Strongbox is </p> <blockquote><p>a wood system utilizing current technology in the fields of module manufacturing, forged hardware and building trades. </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>... </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>The Strongbox utilizes several factory fabricated lightweight wooden modules used in tandem with each adjacent module, then fastened together as a single unit. The unit is designed to be supported on four points only. They would rest on...raised concrete pier foundations for storm surge areas...or on rails, which are then connected to four piers for mobile home applications. </p> </blockquote><p>About the size: </p> <blockquote><p>Designed to fit in an interior area of 760 square feet with 9'-0” ceilings, the system can be used as a single module or multiple modules. </p> </blockquote><br /> Fri, 16 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Roig-Associates/'>Roig Associates</a> Caribbean Affordable Solar House (CASH) by Universidad de Puerto Rico <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/30/CASH.jpg'><br /> <p>The final Solar Decathlon 2009 team on our list: Team Puerto Rico. </p> <p>Their house: Caribbean Affordable Solar House (CASH). </p> <p>From the DOE site: </p> <blockquote><p>The Puerto Rico team designed its entry for maximum connection to the outdoors and to serve as a model for energy-efficient homes in the Caribbean. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">site</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video</a> (4:59) </li> <li> Facebook <a href=";view=all">photos</a> </li> <li> flickr <a href="">photostream</a> </li> </ul><br /> Thu, 15 Oct 2009 22:48:24 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> BeauSoleil Home by University of Louisiana at Lafayette <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/28/BeauSoleil.jpg'><br /> <p>The University of Louisiana calls their Solar Decathlon 2009 entry BeauSoleil, which means &quot;sunshine&quot; in Canjun French. </p> <p>According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>The house is designed to withstand hurricane-force winds and to be totally self-sufficient, which makes it especially ideal for coastal environments. </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>... </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>TEAM BeauSoleil are dedicated to turning this real-world, sustainable living solution into an affordable, working model that can be sold to the public. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video gallery</a> </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: they are sharing updates on <a href="">a Facebook page</a> instead of a blog. </p><br /> Tue, 13 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> The B&W House by Team Spain <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/30/Black__White_House.jpg'><br /> <p>Here's another long-distance entry for the Solar Decathlon 2009: Team Spain's The Black and White House. </p> <p>According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>The major concept of the House is to be transportable and easy to build all over the world. </p> <p>The prototype of The B&amp;W House was therefore conceived as a modular plan made up of nine squares[.] For transport and assembly purposes, the house has been divided Into three mobile units. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">news</a> </li> <li> <a href="">virtual visit</a> </li> <li> <a href=";feature=player_embedded">assembly video</a> (3:20) </li> </ul><br /> Mon, 12 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> surPLUShome by Team Germany <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/30/Germany.jpg'><br /> <p>Team Germany's Solar Decathlon 2009 entry is called surPLUShome. </p> <p>According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>One of the biggest problems for Team Germany is the building's transportation. For fast assembly on the National Mall the building is designed [to be] modularized, divided vertically and horizontally into four building modules. To secure the building during the transport, we supported the wooden structure with reusable steel profiles. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">webcam</a> </li> </ul><br /> Fri, 09 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000 Meltwater House by University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/28/Meltwater.jpg'><br /> <p>Another Solar Decathlon 2009 team: University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. </p> <p>Their Meltwater House is constructed with 4 modular units. According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>The powerful change-of-state involved in melting the glaciers of the Wisconsin Glaciation Period provided the model for the homes many multi-functional components that adapt to the changing needs of its inhabitants. </p> </blockquote><br /> Thu, 08 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> North House by Team Ontario/BC <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/North_House.jpg'><br /> <p>Another Solar Decathlon 2009 team from Canada: Team Ontario/BC. </p> <p>They refer to themselves as &quot;Team North&quot; and include students from three schools: </p> <ul> <li> University of Waterloo in Ontario </li> <li> Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario </li> <li> Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia </li> </ul> <p>According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>Each component of the building is designed as an independently stable, shippable, and repairable or replaceable artifact </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> </ul><br /> Wed, 07 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> Show-Me Solar by Team Missouri <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/show_me.jpg'><br /> <p>Team Missouri's entry in the Solar Decathlon 2009 is called Show-Me Solar. </p> <p>The team is a partnership between students from University of Missouri-Columbia and the Missouri University of Science &amp; Technology. </p> <p>According to their <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>The modern style of the home is governed by a modular three-foot grid on which everything connects, leaving the design simple for construction and unifying the interior and exterior with crisp, elegant lines. </p> </blockquote><p>Their <a href="">page</a> on the DOE site further explains: </p> <blockquote><p>The Show-Me House consists of a single module that is 15 by 50 ft (4.6 by 15.3 m). It is capped by a hinged roof, which is roughly 14.5 ft ( 4.4 m) at its highest point. Structural insulated panels in both the roof and walls provide an impressive R-40 insulation value. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">webcam</a> (when it works...) </li> </ul><br /> Tue, 06 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> Curio.House by Team Boston <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/curio.jpg'><br /> <p>Here's a local entry to the Solar Decathlon 2009: Team Boston. </p> <p>From their <a href="">page</a> on the DOE site: </p> <blockquote><p>Team Boston is composed of more than 150 students from Boston Architectural College (BAC) and Tufts University as well as a handful from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, Northeastern University, and Massachusetts College of Art and Design. </p> </blockquote><p>The primary form of their Curio.House is an L-module. According to the Curio <a href="">site</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>This L-module adheres dimensionally to standard shipping requirements, and can be developed further into a factory-built, prefabricated seed to be easily shipped to any site. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">video</a> (2:08) </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> </ul><br /> Mon, 05 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> Pictures of Method Homes setting <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/30/Lake_Whatcom.jpg'><br /> <p><img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Method-Homes/">Method Homes</a> recently <a href="">posted</a> 10 pictures of a home setting on Lake Whatcom in Washington. </p><br /> Related Posts:<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;1. <a href='/blog/2009/09/03/method-prefab/' class='blog_sm'>Method Prefab</a>&nbsp;(Sep 03, 2009)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;2. <a href='/blog/2009/03/12/balance-s-m-l-series-method-homes/' class='blog_sm'>Balance S-M-L Series from Method Homes</a>&nbsp;(Mar 12, 2009)<br /> Sat, 03 Oct 2009 13:17:05 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Method-Homes/'>Method Homes</a> SolAbode by Team Alberta <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/SolarAbode.jpg'><br /> <p>Team Alberta is &quot;the first-ever all western Canadian team to be selected to compete in the prestigious international Solar Decathlon competition.&quot; </p> <p>Their entry, SolAbode, is a collaborative effort between: </p> <ul> <li> University of Calgary </li> <li> SAIT Polytechnic </li> <li> Mount Royal College </li> <li> Alberta College of Art + Design. </li> </ul> <p>According to a <a href="">February newsletter</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>Our house is designed to sit on a rolling rail system. This means we won't have to use a crane on the Washington Mall. Our modules (four in all) will be unloaded at one end of the rails, rolled to the next module and then prepped for connecting before being linked in place. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">site</a> </li> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">web cam</a> </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: </p> <blockquote><p>[SolAbode] will be showcased in Vancouver during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. </p> </blockquote><br /> Fri, 02 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> ZEROW HOUSE by Rice University <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/ZEROW_House.jpg'><br /> <p>Rice University's <a href="">entry</a> in the Solar Decathlon 2009 is the &quot;Zero Energy Row House.&quot; </p> <blockquote><p>The design of the ZEROW HOUSE adopts the row-house typology, specific to the urban fabric of Houston's Third Ward community as a primary precedent. Our design addresses the small size and limited budget of typical row houses through replication, innovative use of current technologies, local materiality, and an understanding of life-cycle costs. </p> </blockquote><p>The total cost: $148,000. </p> <p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">budget</a> </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: </p> <blockquote><p>Instead of building a house just for the competition, the team designed a home they could give back to the community. The team has already negotiated an agreement with Project Row Houses, a local community development organization, to give the ZEROW HOUSE a permanent home in Houston's Third Ward after the competition. </p> </blockquote><br /> Thu, 01 Oct 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> In the news: Blu Homes acquires rights to Michelle Kaufmann's designs <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/30/Blu_logo.png'><br /> <p>The San Francisco Chronicle <a href="">reports</a> that Michelle Kaufmann has sold the building rights to several of her <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Michelle-Kaufmann-Designs/">MK Designs</a> homes to <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Blu-Homes/">Blu Homes</a>. </p> <p>Designs include: </p> <ul> <li> <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/home/Glidehouse/">Glidehouse</a> </li> <li> <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/home/Sunset-Breezehouse/">Breezehouse</a> </li> <li> <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/home/mkLotus/">mkLotus</a> </li> <li> <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/home/mkSolaire/">mkSolaire</a> </li> </ul> <p>According to the article: </p> <blockquote><p>They have developed a proprietary unfolding modular technology that will enable cost savings to be made on Kaufmann designs at the shipping and on-site building stages. Elements that make up the homes such as wall panels are created with hinges so they can be compacted for transportation and unfolded on site. The MK Designs homes will have slightly different floor plans, proportions and elevations from the originals, although, Kaufmann said, the design principles should remain the same. </p> </blockquote><p>Blu Homes plans to market the homes nationwide. </p> <p><div> <div><span class="fieldname">Title:</span> <a href="">New home for Kaufmann's prefab, green designs</a></div> <div><span class="fieldname">Author:</span> Tracey Taylor</div> <div><span class="fieldname">Publication:</span> San Francisco Chronicle</div> <div><span class="fieldname">Section:</span> Business</div> <div><span class="fieldname">Length:</span> 402 words</div> <div><span class="fieldname">Date:</span> September 30, 2009</div> </div> </p><br /> Related Posts:<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;1. <a href='/blog/2009/08/14/podcast-features-marmol-radziner-and-blu-homes/' class='blog_sm'>Podcast features Marmol Radziner and Blu Homes</a>&nbsp;(Aug 14, 2009)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;2. <a href='/blog/2009/05/27/michelle-kaufmann-designs-closing/' class='blog_sm'>Michelle Kaufmann Designs closing</a>&nbsp;(May 27, 2009)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;3. <a href='/blog/2008/10/28/blu-homes/' class='blog_sm'>Blu Homes</a>&nbsp;(Oct 28, 2008)<br /> Wed, 30 Sep 2009 20:54:31 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/MKD/'>MKD</a><a href='/blog/tag/article/'>article</a><a href='/blog/tag/Blu-Homes/'>Blu Homes</a> Natural Fusion Home by Penn State <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/23/Natural_Fusion.jpg'><br /> <p>Penn State's entry in the 2009 Solar Decathlon is called Natural Fusion. </p> <p>Worth a look: their <a href="">site</a> and <a href="">blog</a>. </p> <p>Their <a href="">May 20, 2009</a> explains the house's name. </p> <p>Interesting to note: According to a recent Treehugger <a href="">post</a>, Ed Begley, Jr. will be the guest of honor at their Bon Voyage party this weekend. </p><br /> Wed, 30 Sep 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> Solar House 1 by Ohio State University <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/23/OSU.jpg'><br /> <p>Next on the 2009 Solar Decathlon list: Ohio State University. </p> <p>According to a <a href="">post</a> in February, Solar House 1 has: </p> <blockquote><p>three modules that will be transported separately to Washington, D.C. </p> </blockquote><p>and </p> <blockquote><p>each module was designed to be stucturally independent </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">site</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href="">video gallery</a> </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: </p> <blockquote><p>This house is &quot;Ohio-centric,&quot; and uses local materials wherever possible, Whirlpool appliances (an Ohio manufacturer), and reclaimed barn wood on the façade to honor the agricultural heritage of the state. </p> </blockquote><br /> Tue, 29 Sep 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> ICON Solar House by University of Minnesota <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/23/ICON_Solar_House.png'><br /> <p>Monday's Solar Decathlon 2009 entry comes from University of Minnesota. </p> <blockquote><p>The design of the ICON Solar House is based on the familiar gabled roof form of an American family home. </p> </blockquote><p>According to their <a href="">site</a>, the 800-square-foot home was broken down into 6 modules for the trip to Washington, D.C. </p> <p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photos</a> </li> </ul><br /> Mon, 28 Sep 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> West Coast Green in San Francisco: October 1-3, 2009 <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/24/West_Coast_Green.png'><br /> <p>West Coast Green 2009 will be returning to California in October. </p> <blockquote><p>At West Coast Green you’ll find over 300 exhibitors showcasing the latest in resource-efficiency among a stunning array of green and healthy building products. Over 100 experts and visionary leaders will be presenting their latest developments, insights, and inspiration at the expanding frontiers of the field. And over 14,000 attendees including the entire chain of professionals and decision-makers rarely reached by other conferences are expected. </p> </blockquote><p>Two things to note on the prefab front: </p> <ul> <li> <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Green-Horizon-Manufacturing/">Green Horizon Manufacturing</a> will be showcasing their new <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/home/SFH40/">SFH40</a> model. </li> <li> Michelle Kaufmann of <img src="/media/blog/images/info_small.gif" border="0" alt="info_small" /><a href="/company/Michelle-Kaufmann-Designs/">MKD</a> will be running a session on Friday called &quot;Housing 2.0: Re-thinking the Prefab Model&quot; </li> </ul> <p><div><span class="fieldname">title:</span> <a href="">West Coast Green 2009</a></div> <div><span class="fieldname">where:</span> San Francisco, CA</div> <div><span class="fieldname">location:</span> Fort Mason Center</div> <div><span class="fieldname">date:</span> October 1 - 3, 2009</div> <div><span class="fieldname">cost:</span> ranges from $45 for Tradeshow pass up to $895 for Full Conference</div> <div><span class="fieldname">notes:</span> Their <a href="">registration page</a> has more pricing info.</div> </p><br /> Related Posts:<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;1. <a href='/blog/2008/10/08/west-coast-green-2008-harbinger-house/' class='blog_sm'>West Coast Green 2008: The Harbinger House</a>&nbsp;(Oct 08, 2008)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;2. <a href='/blog/2008/08/15/west-coast-green-container-showhouse-sg-blocks/' class='blog_sm'>West Coast Green container Showhouse from SG Blocks</a>&nbsp;(Aug 15, 2008)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;3. <a href='/blog/2008/08/14/west-coast-green-2008-coming-september-25-27/' class='blog_sm'>West Coast Green 2008 coming September 25-27</a>&nbsp;(Aug 14, 2008)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;4. <a href='/blog/2007/10/02/west-coast-green-round-up/' class='blog_sm'>West Coast Green round-up</a>&nbsp;(Oct 02, 2007)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;5. <a href='/blog/2007/09/19/hading-to-west-coast-green-conference-this-weekend/' class='blog_sm'>Heading to West Coast Green Conference this weekend</a>&nbsp;(Sep 19, 2007)<br /> &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;6. <a href='/blog/2007/07/18/west-coast-green-conference/' class='blog_sm'>West Coast Green Conference</a>&nbsp;(Jul 18, 2007)<br /> Fri, 25 Sep 2009 16:42:14 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/MKD/'>MKD</a><a href='/blog/tag/conference/'>conference</a><a href='/blog/tag/West-Coast-Green/'>West Coast Green</a><a href='/blog/tag/event/'>event</a> blue house by University of Kentucky <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/21/sky_blue.png'><br /> <p>Next on our list of 2009 Solar Decathlon teams: The University of Kentucky. </p> <p>According to the Solar Decathlon site: </p> <blockquote><p>The blue house embodies Kentucky's historic and indigenous breezeway house design and incorporates images from Kentucky on the exterior. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> <a href="">site</a> </li> <li> <a href="">photo gallery</a> </li> <li> <a href=";feature=player_embedded">video</a> (4:54) </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: </p> <blockquote><p>The blue house is designed to exceed the U.S. Green Buildings Council's LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for Homes Platinum standards </p> </blockquote><br /> Fri, 25 Sep 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a> Interlock House by Iowa State University <img src='/media/photos/2009/09/18/Interlock_House_.png'><br /> <p>Another Solar Decathlon 2009 team: Iowa State University. </p> <p>According to the project manager, Interlock House: </p> <blockquote><p>[is] a modular construction, with five different components of the house. <br /> </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>There will be three floor components, two of them having walls, one of them having pop-up walls on site...[it] will also have a top portion with two east and west roof modules and a center portion also assembled on site. </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>... </p> </blockquote><blockquote><p>So we have the east and west parts [of] the house built ahead of time and the center part built on site with pre-cut and pre-fabricated materials. </p> </blockquote><p>Worth a look: </p> <ul> <li> Web <a href="">site</a> and <a href="">blog</a> </li> <li> <a href="">Photo Gallery</a> </li> <li> (live) <a href="">webcam</a> </li> </ul> <p>Interesting to note: </p> <blockquote><p>Interlock House is designed specifically to appeal to seniors and meets all regulations for accessibility under the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act. </p> </blockquote><br /> Thu, 24 Sep 2009 12:00:00 -0000<a href='/blog/tag/Solar-Decathlon/'>Solar Decathlon</a>