ECO - OUTPOST in the Desert

Phoenix House - A Solar Home/ Futurist Vision

A two story greenhouse cavity wall, facing south, insulates and protects the living space from the extreme temperature fluctuations. Air can be circulated through this vertical garden by dampers at the ceiling and floor where it can be let into the house or drawn over a passive rock heat exchange chamber beneath the house from where it can be pulled back into the house when needed, allowing the temperature to remain warmer during the winter months and allowing the temperature to remain more comfortable during cool deserts nights. The greenhouse can also help humidify the air in this intensely dry climate. The solar pool, linked to collectors, serves as a heat pump. Brightly colored awnings adjust to shade the roof garden/ deck. A solar electric pumping station charges vehicles directly from an attached photovoltaic.


The house is a prototypical design, which can be manufactured as a kit of parts that can be shipped to the site and assembled.


This PHOENIX project is one of a series of designs created to be "OUTPOSTS" for living unplugged from the grid.  The ECO TRAILER project included in another section is another "OUTPOST" design.

ECO - OUTPOST in a Global Warming Age

PHOENIX House, a solar home, is one of a series of designs created to be "OUTPOSTS" for living - unplugged from the grid. Set in the intensely hot, dry climate of the desert near Phoenix, Arizona it embraces a vision of the future where technology has become the architecture - creating a new solar aesthetic. It celebrates the potential of emerging photovoltaic and wind technologies and couples them with passive energy design strategies to create a “machine for living.”


The intent of this “smart” structure is not simply to sustain but to evolve, inspire and transform. The design’s smart technology integrates active & passive energy design strategies and builds a new relationship between climate, site and the occupant. It is responsive to the external environment and adjusts the internal climate and conditions for optimum comfort, convenience and life-style.


A giant solar roof umbrella supported by a steel frame and vertical steel trusses sits over the living space. A photovoltaic array and water circulating solar panels are integrated in this umbrella. The house is wrapped in a granular coated, recycled aluminum skin with high emissive qualities that reflects and releases the suns heat and keeps the skin surface and structure cool.