A passive house, enveloped in an energy harvesting shell, has taken home first place in the Architecture category of the 2014 Solar Decathlon Europe.

Designed and built by students from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya and Barcelona Tech, the Ressò House integrates a series of self sufficient systems including solar photovoltaic panels, passive heat collection, natural ventilation and methods to collect and conserve rainwater.

The 112 square metre cube is oriented like a diamond pointing north, with the rooms running along the north west and north east sides of the home containing service spaces such as the kitchen and bathroom. 

A double-layered, semi-transparent polycarbonate wall makes up the house’s south wall, acting as a heat collector and allowing natural light to filter into the interior.

A large, double-height communal space in the centre of the building offers a multifunctional area that can be adapted to suit the occupant’s needs.

The house is furnished with recycled, upcycled and collected items such as seats made from car tyres and a rope swing crafted from old skateboards.

Team Ressò are competing against 19 groups of students from around the world, all vying to win the Solar Decathlon Europe contest.

Courtesy Inhabitat