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Studio Formwork has just released the designs for a lightweight inflatable solar skin.

Solar Skin is a lightweight unitized system of inflatable solar components that zip together to form a temporary skin that can provide an inefficient building access to the benefits of sustainable engineering without renovation. The units are 4ft length x 2.5ft width and are comprised of white foam cylinder eye shaped perimeter pieces that house an inflatable polymer with the inside lined with thin film solar cells printed on mylar. The structure can either be installed as a tensile member, in which the wires are fed through the foam tubing or with flexible lightweight structural tubing that can be integrated onto any existing structure or stand alone to create a temporary shelter.

Solar Skin will soon be published in a new book titled Design Ecologies, edited by Lisa Tilder and Beth Blostein to be published by Princeton Architectural Press.

The book presents an overview of contemporary ecological practices in architecture, landscape architecture and community design. Through emphasis on social, material, technological, and biological strategies, the book will examine potential innovations in environmental design, presented through a series of essays and case studies.

(Fabiana Cambiaso – Università La Sapienza)

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