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4 solar-powered buildings that changed architecture forever

As suppliers of energy efficient window and door solutions, we at EE Windows take great satisfaction in helping to realise visions of sustainable architecture. We are constantly inspired by the incredible advancements in sustainable building design from around the world that become front page news.

Forrest Gump called it “some kind of fruit company”, but when I flew over Apple’s new corporate headquarters in California last week it… | Instagram


Apple’s Spaceship HQ

Money seems to be no object to Apple and their new headquarters in California. With its unofficial title of the “Spaceship”, the cost to build this incredible feat of green architecture approximated $5 billion upon completion. This mammoth structure not only includes the world’s largest piece of structural glass ever made, but is also operated by one of the largest solar power systems for a corporate building in the world. The vast roof consists of thousands of solar panels and generates an estimated 16 megawatts of power. The campus also draws power from renewable energy generated by a 130-megawatt solar installation nearby.


Melbourne’s Pixel Building

The vibrant, striking Pixel Building in Melbourne was the first ever building in Australia to achieve a perfect Green Star score for its faultless sustainable design. The multicoloured marvel operates on total carbon neutrality, a process whereby the building offsets all of the carbon contained in the materials used to construct it. The building achieves this through its numerous green features such as its three wind turbines, both fixed and tracking photovoltaic energy arrays, and 100% fresh air cooling system. It is completely carbon free, meaning that renewable energy compensates for the amount of carbon generated annually through the building’s operations.


Copenhagen International School

Recently completed in 2017, the new campus for the Copenhagen International School in Denmark features the world’s largest solar facade. It houses more than 12,000 coloured solar panels that are integrated directly into the structure of the building rather than on the rooftop. This array of solar panels produces roughly 300 megawatts of power per year. In an effort to further broaden public awareness of sustainability and its vital importance not only to architecture but to the future of the human race, the school introduced “solar studies” to the curriculum. This allows the students to monitor the buildings energy output in real-time, and the curriculum will integrate this information in physics and mathematics classes.


Tesla’s Gigafactory

Located in Nevada, the future of Tesla seems to be grand and driven by sustainability, as evidenced by its ever-expanding Gigafactory. Once completed, this facility is not only going to be a net-zero energy building, it is also predicted to be the world’s biggest building in terms of physical area size. Tesla decided to abstain from building a gas pipeline to the facility in order to force the factory to be renewable. Tesla will achieve total renewable energy by covering the roof in solar panels and also neighbouring hillsides. The Gigafactory is a stunning example of sustainable architecture in action when cost is absolutely no object.

At EE Windows, sustainability is at the heart of everything we do, and we stock a wide range of uPVC double glazed windows and doors which are essential for new renewable builds. If you’d like to find out more, get in touch with us on 1300 765 536 or via our online contact form.

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