The first design workshop was held at Brighton University Led by John Smith MCIAT (VL, Brighton Allumni and modular construction specialist).

John Led the group through the process of design and the overarching requirements for the Solar Decathlon 19.

The students had a wide range of backgrounds so the primary aim was to define what was needed and what did the students want to achieve.

The white board session captured an evolving design.

white board, initial designsteams list of initial requirements

Over Arching Principals:

  • Recycled
  • Reused
  • Natural Products
  • Circular Economy
  • Must be marketable / affordable


  • Kitchen
  • 2 living spaces
  • Shower room
  • storage / plant room
  • home office space / study
  • home gym

The internal spaces should be flexible and adaptable to change.

Technology and equipment:

  • PV array
  • Battery system
  • Rainwater harvesting
  • Waste water treatment
  • Composting Loo
  • MVHR
  • LED Lighting throughout
  • Edible plants
  • Green Roof
  • Green Wall
  • Solar Thermal
  • ASHP
  • Human power gym to charge battery
  • Car plug in

Plus a VR showcase of the building in the building.

Sustainable materials, products & Thinking:

  • Pond
  • re use of old furniture from the university / upcycling
  • bees / insects / bats
  • recycled timber cladding
  • ETFE roof
  • Folding furniture
  • Reuse of shipping containers as the key module.


All this information from the workshop will be taken forward to create a design from and to assists with forming the brief.




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