Techlab laboratory and its Aquasorbent Façade has won the GROHE annual Water Research Prize for finding creative solutions for water in the built environment.
In a statement made available to journalists, GROHE said Techlab’s research team’s design was inspired by the Namib desert beetle. The research team designed a façade using honeycomb-like modules which absorb and use moisture in the air to reach indoor thermal comfort. Designed with peaks and troughs on their surface the modules help retain water molecules from the air.
It said the collected water will be stored in vertical tanks embedded in the façade on every storey. By adjusting the modules according to the optimal rainfall angle of every region, collecting water from both humidity and rainfall conditions will be possible in all climates around the world. The jury was delighted by this unique solution that tackles water scarcity around the globe.
“This innovative project tackles water scarcity and I particularly loved the inspiration directly taken from nature,” said the leader, business unit projects, LIXIL EMENA, Stefan Schmied.
The programme director, World Architecture Festival, Paul Finch, added: “All the judges appreciated the inspiration and application of this nano-technology that could help solve the lack of water in stressed areas of the planet”.
The Water Research Prize has been part of the World Architecture Festival since 2017 when the WAF X Manifesto was first published. The manifesto identified the most important challenges for architects within the next 10 years, including water in the built environment. With this year’s festival focusing on the improvement of the quality of life in urban areas through greener, healthier infrastructures, the close water connection is particularly striking. By sponsoring the award, GROHE has indicated its support for research in the field of unique architectural challenges around water for the past four years and is proud to continue doing so at this year’s festival.