Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Dome sweet dome
I always wondered how it will feel like to live like a smurf...
I came upon pics of these odd-looking houses. What made them even more peculiar is that they are made out of styrofoam, typically something the Japanese would come up with.
The Aso Farm Land Resort village in Kyushu, Japan has about 480 styrofoam domes as lodging, recreational facilities and retail shops.
While Styrofoam may be most commonly associated with disposable coffee cups, meat trays and packaging, prefab home manufacturer Japan Dome House Co., Ltd. uses it to construct easy-to-assemble modular homes.
Dubbed the 'habitat for the 21st century,' the dome house is an igloo-shaped structure built from snap-together wall sections made of 100% expanded styrofoam. It might seem like an odd choice of material for a house, but the company lists a number of advantages that styrofoam has over traditional materials.
Unlike wood and metal structures, the styrofoam dome house does not rust, rot or attract termites. It is also highly resistant to earthquakes and typhoons. In addition, the walls, which are treated with a flame retardant, emit no toxic fumes in a fire.
The houses are environmentally friendly and energy efficient. They also have good insulation properties and can reduce energy bills by 90%. The styrofoam used for the dome home's 175 mm thick walls is significantly denser and stronger than ordinary packing foam.