Mumbai: IIT-B students design house powered entirely by solar energy

Feb 15, 2018, 08:55 IST | Pallavi Smart

IIT-B students design a house with lighting, AC and other facilities run fully on solar energy

The design of the 1,800-sqft solar-powered house created by IIT-B's Team SHUNYA
The design of the 1,800-sqft solar-powered house created by IIT-B's Team SHUNYA

Zero electricity, full solar power: that, in a nutshell, is the concept of a house students of Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, (IIT-B) will be creating for an upcoming international competition.

The house conceptualised by Team SHUNYA is fully functional with lighting and air-conditioning, and a furnished kitchen and three rooms, running on solar energy with the help of rooftop panels. It will not only use zero electrical energy from the grid, but will also be capable of generating and feeding excess energy to the grid on a bright sunny day.

IIT-B's Team

Unveiled yesterday by institute director Dr Devang Khakhar, it will be India's only entry to the 'Solar Decathlon' in China in July-August.

Project Solarise
Team SHUNYA (Sustainable Habitat for an Urbanising Nation by Young Aspirants) is set to begin construction of the house on campus.

The challenge is to develop state-of-the-art tech and use it for designing, constructing and operating a modular, solar-powered net positive energy house to present it in Dezhou City, Shandong.

"Another challenge is to construct the house here, disassemble it for transportation, and re-reassemble it in just 12 days," said Vijay Sharma, M.Tech student of metallurgy, who is heading operations in the 40-member team.

Several countries are participating in the competition, where organisers will determine functionality of the houses through real-time events inside the structures, such as hosting dinners and movie nights.

Building blocks
"It will be a 1,800 sqft ground-plus-one house. We will consider climatic conditions of Amravati in Andhra Pradesh, as these are found to match with those in Dezhou City."

Bhavya Jyothi, electrical head of the team, said, "The house will be built using hybrid construction methodology, with prefabricated steel-floor grids, which will be placed on the columns without welding. The walls will be made of panels having three layers, providing a good insulation from the environment. This will reduce construction time.

"The house will be equipped with home automation and modular wiring to reduce complexity and enhance safety. Its facade has been inspired by the traditional jaali; it'll enable diffused lighting to enhance living comfort, apart from reducing heat load on the house."

The team plans to show the house to the Indian government once ready. It feels that with effort from the government, such houses can be made affordable for the middle class.

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