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Kameleon Solar facilitates sustainable architecture with their innovative solar facades

Kameleon Solar sponsored two Dutch contestants in the Solar Decathlon Europe 21-22, an international competition where student teams present innovative solutions for self-sufficient homes. The prototype buildings designed and built by team VIRTUe (TU Eindhoven) and team SUM (TU Delft) each feature a beautiful, colored solar façade manufactured by Kameleon Solar.

VIRTUe’s ripple won 2nd place with a ColorBlast® solar belt and façade

The concept ripple means to encourage a more sustainable way of living. It consists of a low-impact sustainable home, the EQUI smart system that helps distribute the electricity consumption, and a coaching app that playfully encourages people to live more economically. Team VIRTUe succeeded in presenting a ‘convincing concept of prefabrication and scaling’ and won the Solar Award for the most effective integration of a replicable on-site solar application that reduces the CO2 emissions for heating and cooling a building. ripple will be re-built in Eindhoven at Living LAB 040, a corporation that wants to improve innovative housing concepts.

The colored solar panels of the facade and roof edge do not stand out as energy generators.

Colored solar panels are incorporated into the façade and a solar ‘belt’ between the façade and the roof, leaving more space for biodiversity and social activities on the rooftop. The colored solar façade features a hidden PV-thermal system and looks attractive. Kameleon Solar customized the design pattern of the solar panels, so the shape of the house replaces the traditional hexagonal pattern of their product, ColorBlast.

Team SUM finished 3rd with a ColorBlast® Design solar façade

SUM’s mission was to achieve a mutually beneficial relationship between the user, community, and environment: a symbiosis. Targeting outdated housing stock in the Netherlands, their design proposes to transform 847,000 underperforming flats (portiekwoningen) by adding an ‘energy-positive topping’: a module that not only creates two new layers with extra homes, but also makes the flat energy-neutral. With this design, SUM managed to impress the jury and win the Affordability and Viability Award. SUM’s house is not just efficient, but thanks to the colored solar façade it also looks beautiful. Kameleon Solar accurately translated the typical Delft blauw design onto the custom-sized colored PV panels, for an aesthetically satisfying result.

A painting by Delft in a Delfts blauwe style is shown on this solar façade.

The two Dutch teams jointly organized the Netherlands Day during the competition, and happily celebrated together their stunning results during the Final Award ceremony on 24 June 2022.

Team VIRTUe and Team SUM celebrate the many awards they have won for their projects.

First publication on BNA Architecten Jaarboek 2022/2023, pp. 200-201, 8 November 2022.

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