Sustainable Turtle House Design Brief -within an Aztec context (Design and Visual Communication)

Sustainable Turtle House Design Brief -within an Aztec context (Design and Visual Communication)


This video tutorial is for Design and Visual Communication students
of about fifteen years of age and the idea is to develop their giftedness and talent by the challenges set in this brief the brief is design a
sustainable turtle home within a Aztec context. Now the challenge is to
include some sustainable features and functions, biomimetics which means ask nature how, which could inform and assist students to come up with a unique design. The other area which will look into is
sustainable features and functions like passive solar where the sun heats up an
object and slowly releases the heat called a heatsink. So, those are just in short. You can find the brief as well as some resources at williamvanzyl.com, and also
an academic paper is available which could assist teachers and students with this
brief. This brief includes the use of a simple object to construct or design a turtle home in Aztec society. Now what I have here is just an ancient pot, and I’m going to use this pot by turning it upside down, and cut an opening where the turtle could go in. Oviously this is a smaller scale than what we are going to work with, because the turtle is slightly bigger. But this is just an idea to start students off as an introduction. in short day in the
situation is you live in mexico city in South America during the Aztec
civilisation, during the fifteen hundreds You are part of a turtle family living
at the lake, and you are watching the Aztecs moving on their canoes daily transporting food and so on, on the lake.
The brief is design a turtle house, a sustainable turtle
house for you and your family of four members. Use biomimetics, in other
words ask nature how, to assist you. Draw on experiences as a turtle. Think like a turtle but construct and design like a human. The challenge is to be creative
and innovative. In short the layout is as follow: we have eight terracotta pots the pebbles represents the terracotta pots the large terracotta pot in the middle
is where the food would be stored, so we have two houses for each turtle a summer and winter house, summer, winter, summer, winter. It means two homes for every turtle. This is a 3-D
view of the little town or the home for the turtles. As mentioned summer, winter,
summer, winter, summer, winter, etc. for every turtle and a food storage area over here. Some details on the left is shown, some
sectional views we have a winter home and a summer home right there the winter home will be heated up by the
sun. The terracotta is a good heat sink, and will absorb the heat and will act as a
heat sink and released the heat slowly so the turtles would have a lovely warm
home during winter.The summer house however, is covered with vegetation like
a typical green roof used in sustainable architecture which would cover and keep
it cool. We could also introduced a floor- of terracotta tiles or fire bricks- also
well the best heatsink one can find and that of course will also heat up. But we
need to open the floor area so the sun could get to it so it. So it is exposed to the
sun. The question is how will we do that In our next sketch we are going to discuss that. Our final sketch is an illustration of
the entire system including the home of the turtle.Now To orientate the viewer, because the sun over there.
We’ve got the home of the turtle right there. That is the ground leve.l We have got a pond here.
Cloud. You can see the rain and that would harvest the water. We have got a deciduous
tree which shed its leaves during winter we have a wind turbine and we
have a battery underground in a lovely waterproof container. So, let’s start with
the home quickly. We can see that this home here has got like a spherical shape
and the idea is to have it move like so, like an aperture it can open and close on
demand which will allow more sun into the home. Obviously, the the turtles would
be out having some fun in the lake and when they return in the afternoon it
will be nice and warm. So, if we have a floor tile or a fire brick, a good heatsink there, the sun would heat it up. Because it would open, and then of course it would close. It won’t close completely because we need access for the turtle.
I have also included a gear mechanism right which means that would move this roof-
opening and closing it on demand. We could have like a sensor maybe, and let’s
assume that the perfect temperature for a turtle is 22 degrees centigrade
(celsius). The sensor would send messages to the electrical motor which sits here
which would open and closed it. I do have some vegetation at the back here because the
sun won’t get to this area. So, this would just produce fresh oxygen and that’s one
of the functions of a green roof is It absorbs carbon dioxide and produces
lovely fresh oxygen. So, it’s a very layered solution and there is
so much more one can add. So let’s continue. So, the question is why do
I need this gear, and how will I get power to the electric motor and so on. So, we could
either use solar panels. I have not included that yet. That could be included by the
student, but I’m gonna use a wind turbine to illustrate how the wind could power
the wind turbine, the wind turbine would charge the battery, the batteries would
power the electric motor and the sensor There are three main components which we focus on here, in solving this design brief and thats harvesting the sun, the energy of the sun,
harvesting the energy of the wind, and harvesting the rain water. So, we have
clouds here. When it rains the water would be collected into this pond here.
This is additional water very close for the turtles. The second area
is wind, harvesting wind energy, as I’ve just explained, and lastly-just an
additional component. A system, is a deciduous tree. Deciduous trees shed its
leaves during winter so the sun could get through the tree to the house. This is
typical deciduous landscaping techniques used in sustainable
architecture. During summer, however, the trees full is of leaves and this foilage
would filter the sun. In other words it would keep the home of the turtle cool.
In general that gives us a starting point for this specific brief. There is much more that can be added. But within the group’s -the syndicates- students can collaborate and include
scientific, biological and any other discipline they would like to try and
solve this brief.


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