Skip to main content
SearchLoginLogin or Signup

BYOA: Bring Your Own Algae

Published onJul 08, 2020
BYOA: Bring Your Own Algae

BYOA doubles as an algae harvesting structure and a communal habitat. Algae pods hang from a thin steel frame forming a vault that utilizes the natural light source of the building. Due to their orientation, these demountable pods form a brise-soleil that is more porous at eye level while providing more shade at the top of the canopy. At night, the absorption of light from the day is measurable in the glow-in-the-dark custom joints.


A system of ventilating tubes attaches to the steel frame raceway with custom 3D printed joints, to deliver CO2 to each pod. This ventilation system has dual sources: At the ground level, CO2 is introduced to each pod through blowing tubes, while passive ventilation and sun exposure occur as the structure hugs the operable window. This results in a visible gradient from the ground level to the top.



The algae pods can be removed from the frame at will in order to harvest algae and clean the pods. The pyramid-shaped pods are simply opened through a custom 3D printed hanging clamp on two corners.



The anchor of BYOA doubles as a communal sitting space. Two orientations on this bench are possible, one providing a view of the algae canopy while sitting upright, the other allowing visitors to recline and observe the canopy’s pattern above.


MATERIAL: 105 Custom diamond- vacuum-formed PETG, 500 3D-printed joints, Steel wire, Plywood base, Algae

DESIGN TEAM: Laura Kimmel (B.Arch ‘17), Cristina Medina-Gonzalez (B.Arch ‘17)

BUILD TEAM: Laura Kimmel (B.Arch ‘17), Cristina Medina-Gonzalez (B.Arch ‘17), Christopher Andras (B.Arch ’18), Ruby Kaur (B.Arch ‘18), Yao Mi (B. Arch ‘19), Sisi Yu (B.Arch ‘18)

INSTRUCTOR: Rychiee Espinosa

No comments here
Why not start the discussion?