Architects Scott Specht and Louise Harpman came up with the ZeroHouse as a demonstration that it's possible to devise a house that uses zero energy from the utility grid while also being livable and removable.It is prefabricated and sits on four stainless-steel anchors that permit installation without bringing in earth movers, thus reducing its environmental impact. It can even be erected in shallow water or on slopes of up to 35 degrees.
Right now, though, ZeroHouse is just a paper design. The architects are looking for an investor to finance the $300,000 to $350,000 construction of the prototype and live in its 650 square feet of interior space, with 250 square feet of outdoor covered decks.
If such a person ever comes forward, they should be in for an interesting experience. Solar panels on the house generate all the power, which gets stored in a battery for a week if the sun doesn't shine. It incorporates bay windows of heat-mirror glass that is triple-paned to provide extra insulation. The ZeroHouse also collects its own rain water and filters it in four 550-gallon cisterns. Waste is collected in an automated composting unit and used to feed the garden once a year.
Of course, the whole house is automated to minimize electricity use through use of numerous sensors feeding back environmental conditions to a PC.
The American Statesman recently ran an article on the house:
Specht Harpman is here: http://www.spechtharpman.com/about_us/