Solar and Modular and Pre-Fab… Oh My!

January 9, 2011

RISD and Brown students worked together to build this demo for capturing solar energy without the use of photovoltaics.

I drove past this good-looking structure today after dropping my partner at the train and wondered what it was.  After much time on the City of Providence website it dawned on me that everything cool in Provi-rock comes from RISD (the Rhode Island School of Design).  in just a few minutes I came across an article regarding this joint project between students and faculty at RISD and Brown University.   Working together they demonstrate the capture, storage and delivery of thermally generated electricity, harnessed by means of a small-scale thermal-electric engine. The goal is to capture enough heat from the skin of the building to deliver electricity for a useful and conditioned interior environment – without the use of expensive photovoltaic technology.  To learn more about the project known as the Solar Pavilion Collaborative Research Project, check out the RISD website.

I would love to someday own a piece of land ( with ocean views ) that would allow me to buy and construct a small eco-friendly structure (or structures) to call my own.  I like the idea of not making too much impact on the land and its surroundings, rather drop in a small comfortable place to live and appreciate nature and the beauty of the seashore.  Dornob is the best place to go for prefab eye-candy.  I could spend days (and I do) looking at all the great stuff Kurt posts.  here are a few of my favorites, more images and details on each at

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