January 20, 2006, at 04:19 AM by Sola Roof Guy -
That's absolutely okay Bill. I look forward to a very interesting discussion. I am not at all discouraged by how big the issue is and how many are proposing solutions. The bubble system is unique in the entire world and has no comparison for effectiveness, low cost and portability. We are not just another group looking to get a piece of this big market; we have an important humanitarian result to deliver that others are not achieving: dignity, comfort and a productive, healthful environment. Not to mention our potential for on site production of food and pure water using the Blue Green? concepts.
I have had a very frank conversation with a colleague at work who has been trying to sell (what he thinks is)a good idea into the development arena for ten years. He has a charity called Hover aid that can provide hovercraft to disaster areas to provide transport when the normal infrastructure fails. He has fairly good connections with the development world but has not got anywhere. He is saying, from his experience, that an idea looking for a problem to solve doesn't work in the development arena.
I worry that the current proposal for the eco shelter is forcing a solution which is not appropriate to the needs. I think this came out at our discussions with the Architects last week.
I do think that the ideas are fantastic and may well be useful, but it needs to be much more flexible in its approach. The geodesic dome is a very unforgiving shape for changing the size and shape of spaces and accommodating uneven ground and changing needs. I don't know if you saw the news clip of northern Pakistan last week but there was no flat ground and people were using bits of wood and corrugated iron to fashion shelters. The dome answers one of the issues: to provide an insulated enclosure, but there are many other issues that it does not address. In the tent brief the insulation of the roof is seen as the least important aspect.
I will come along to the Hub today but I would like to air my concerns. If you would prefer me not to, let me know!
I do think that the Solar Roof has great potential in a more settled environment with better support structures and I would really like to find an application in a building.