Dominic Michaelis Associates, Architects, and their parallel practice, Solar Energy Developments, jointly or severally carried out a number of solar and low energy building contracts and R&D programs since their foundation in 1974 until 1990, when their work was carried on by Solar Energy Limited.
JEL FACTORY OFFICES
STOCKPORT AT SUNSET.
Their client list included the European Commission, the National Research and Development Corporation, (NRDC), Calor Gas, Taylor Woodrow, Laing Homes, JEL later taken over by Thorn EMI, and other public and private clients in the UK.
JEL FACTORY OFFICES,
SOUTH FAÇADE ATRIUM
In Stockport, they designed and built the JEL factory offices, a solar low energy building that earned the practice the first joint RIBA, RICS and CIBSE Award. The building was chosen, amongst 22 projects throughout Europe, to be monitored by the EC, and the results showed that for 3% extra cost, energy savings of 50% could be achieved. The building became the flagship of the company, but also of the industrial estate in which it stood. It was opened by Prince Charles and achieved some notoriety as the most energy efficient building of its type in Europe.
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CALOR SOLAR LABORATORY
STOKE POGES. UK. SOLAR
SKETCH OF SOLAR LAB.
SHOWING CHEMICAL 90x90x480 CM THERMAL HOUSING CORES
In the UK, they designed a solar laboratory for Calor Gas, to develop solar heating systems with chemical thermal stores for typical new town houses. These were successfully put to trial in 3 out of 9 new houses forming Solar Court in Milton Keynes, being compared to similar conventional houses, and to 3 passive solar houses built alongside.
CALOR SOLAR HOUSE. LINFORD.A MILTON KEYNES
In Milton Keynes, they designed 50 « passive solar » houses in the MKDC Energy Park.
For an innovative housing exhibition, also in Milton Keynes, they designed the « Ideal Home » solar house, which featured a greenhouse passive system alongside active solar panels linked to a Calor thermal storage system.
IDEAL HOME SOLAR HOUSE
For Interbuild in the late seventies, they designed the Ambient Energy Feature at Olympia, showing all novel means of harvesting renewable energies, opened by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip.
The practice also carried out work abroad, with competitions in France, with Gilles Bouchez, for the Ministry of Finance, Kaufmann and Broad, the New Towns of St Quentin en Yvelines and Melun Senart, and building contracts for many private clients.
The practices developed close links in Italy with the Energy Saving Agency of Agip, APRE, and carried out work for the IACPs, (low cost housing institutes), of Pisa and Siena, designing groups of 45 solar heated flats for each. The Barbaricina Housing in Pisa was also amongst the 22 projects chosen by the EC for their Project Monitor Program. The building showed 51% energy savings compared to demanding existing IACP norms.
PISA. BARBARICINA IACP Solar heated housing. South façade.
PISA IACP North façade.
They also designed the ground breaking low energy office headquarters for Agip Jacorossi in Rome, which was heated and cooled by an air to water heat pump displayed on its roofscape .
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ROOF MOUNTED AIR TO
WATER HEAT PUMP. AGIP JACOROSSI HQ. ROME
As consultants to the prestigious Studio Nervi, they designed a cable shade net stadium structure for the Saudi Ministry for Youth and Welfare.
SHADE NET STADIUM, RIYADH
for STUDIO NERVI. (Antonio and Mario Nervi)
The practices often worked with other architects, for example, providing a basic design to Sabah Architects for the Sabah Compound in Koweit City, featuring deep balconies for cooling and a stepped glass roof with parabolic solar concentrators powering heating, hot water and air conditioning loads.
SABAH COMPOUND KOWEIT
In Morocco, they designed and built the solar air conditioned Vreeland House in Marrakech, using pisé construction with sun induced air currents in hollow walls to cool the house, equipped with PV solar water pumping, a solar heated pool and domestic hot water.
VREELAND SOLAR COOLED
Because of this experience, they were chosen by the EC to design 5 health centres in the extremely hot and dry Nioro region of Mali, where they developed a novel system of high thick pisé walls made from sun baked sandy clay with a low cement addition, covered with air vented thin concrete vaults, to provide naturally cooled indoor hospital facilities, and outdoor shaded spaces, within allocated low budgets.
5 MALI HEALTH CENTRES IN THE NIORO REGION
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5 MALI HEALTH CENTRES. CONSTRUCTION
In Barbados, with architects Gillespie Steele, they designed new facilities for the Samuel Prescod Johnson Polytechnic using inclined hollow roof slabs to induce cooling convection currents, with pivoting windows to direct air trapped by over sailing roofs.
SJP POLYTECNIC. BARBADOS
Solar cooled workshops
The practices were continuously involved with R&D projects, ranging from self tracking parabolic solar collectors with the NRDC, to long term thermal storage with Harwell Laboratories. With Dunlop Industries, they took out a patent on an all flexible Wave Energy Converter, building a prototype successfully taken out to sea to verify basic principles.
TWIN MEMBRANE WAVE ENERGY CONVERTER with DUNLOP
With APRE, they devised a solar power electrical generator system based on spherical geometry, the absorber being the only moving part. The system could readily be incorporated into building roofs.
SOLAR POWER GENERATOR
With Calor Gas, they developed a solar cooker/boiler using a Fresnel lens, successfully field tested in Sudan.
They were also interested in solar desalination, and prpoposed the Solarcrop system using sea coast greenhouses to desalinate seawater, the water being used for hydroponic growth of food and tree saplings to start coastal aforestation belts.
SOLARCROP GREENHOUSE COASTAL DESALINATION & AFORESTATION STRIP
To be able to take on commercial
projects, they registered Solar Energy Limited, which is carrying on their environmental
dedication, with projects covering solar cooking and solar stills, and proposing
new frontiers with the Energy Island concept, for the development of which they
have now been joined by the University of Southampton eScience Faculty.(www.energyisland.org)
Their work is carried on by Solar Energy Ltd
and by Alex Michaelis of Michaelis Boyd, London (www.michaelisboyd.com):-
ENERGY ISLAND PROJECT with UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON