Al Aire, an installation by Spanish architects, selgascano who filled a gallery in Venice with cutting edge agricultural technology. The architects demonstrate how quickly agriculture is evolving and how humans will soon be able to cultivate plant life with little or no access to the earth.
The plants are fed hydroponically which cuts down on the amount of soil needed. A system called pored delivers water and nutrients through fabric tubes full of tiny holes meaning water is distributed evenly through the planters.
Former students at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London, Roshan Sirohia, Jason Cheah, Sebastian Wolzak and Idrees Rasouli designed SeaLeaf, a hydroponic unit that can grow vegetables whilst floating like a buoy. The team has demonstrated that it can grow at least 7 or 8 yields of bok choy a year while conventional farming only produces 2 or 3. Because so many of today’s mega cities now sit on coastlines the team envisions a network of climate resilient SeaLeaf farms that can feed millions of people.
Aprilli Design Studio’s Urban SkyFarm is a futuristic looking structure that works like a machine. It helps improve environmental quality by filtering water and air, providing edible greens and producing renewable energy.
It is a vertical solution that utilises hydroponics instead of soil based systems. By using the hydroponics the SkyFarm can provide hundreds of lightweight farming decks which can be conditioned with supplementary lighting, heating and moisturising.
One of the first projects it’s developed is a high tech hydroponics system that produces a huge amount of crisp, clean lettuce. The clean room farm Toshiba has set up includes lighting, water disinfection and power generation. The whole process is controlled by tablets given to Toshiba employees. According to Toshiba, the driving force to drive this system is to expand its healthcare business. The system doesn’t require pesticides, never has to deal with bugs and will never produce a lower than satisfactory yield.
The Vertical Harvest farm is designed by E/Ye Design and utilises a 30 by 150 foot plot of unused land in Wyoming. Through an efficient building design and the use of hydroponic farming techniques the farm will be able to produce over 37,000 pounds of greens, 4,400 pounds of herbs and 44,000 pounds of tomatoes. Using 90 percent less water than conventional farming and absolutely no pesticides, the three story vertical harvest greenhouse will enable the cold, land locked city to provide locally grown produce for its residences all year round.
Designed by Biber Architects, the U.S pavilion will explore food production, sustainable farming methods and health and nutrition. Hydroponic methods as well as rainwater harvesting will be used to grow food on the exterior and solar panels on the roof will power the building. This is one of many structures being designed for the Milan Expo 2015 which has the theme ‘feeding the planet, energy for life’ and has opened this month until October 2015 and is expected to attract more than 20 million visitors.
This concept designed by four French architecture students won first prize at the 2013 Jacques Rougerie Foundation competition which is a global contest for ideas about space, oceans and enabling the evolution of our society. The circular ship floats on the surface, gathering icebergs in a central bay and collecting their freshwater as they melt. That water then flows up to hydroponic farming levels then later to an energy plant that provides electricity. The harvester would house a community of up to 800 people at sea enabling workers to stay with their families which in turn would boost moral and mental health.
Barcelona based studio, Forward Thinking Architecture has envisioned a way to transform the inhospitable Arabian Peninsula into a global agricultural hub. By establishing a link between the desert, renewable energy and hydroponic agriculture Oaxis is a self sufficient prototype that could tackle food shortage, reduce the need for imports and promote renewable energy. Recycled water coming from the hydroponic farm will be used for irrigation of the exterior vegetation, allowing plants to expand around the facilities. The crops of fresh fruits and vegetables would be transported via the underground conveyor belt system.
Jin Ho Kim’s aeroponic design proposes a solution for the need to maintain food production whilst devoting land for housing and other industries in the Philippines. The design would see the construction of verticals farms designed for the cultivation of rice. Using aeroponic growing technologies rice can be grown compactly with minimal water while creating jobs and supplying food. Aeroponic gardening is different to hydroponic in that it sprays water and nutrients directly onto the roots of the plants. This reduces the amount of water and energy needed and commercial farms are expected to reduce water use by 90-95%.
This project designed by Eric Vergnes envisions a biomorphic structure in New York City that will harness cutting edge technology to provide the city with its own self-sustaining food source whilst creating a social space that integrates producers with consumers. The structure will harness systems such as aeroponic watering, nutrient technology and controlling lighting and CO2 levels to meet the food demands of future populations.