House of the Future

Engineering ideas using unconventional approaches to building houses have evolved since at least the 1940s. Designers have applied spray- and solid-foamed homes that were originally introduced by the US Army during the 1950s. At the October 1965 annual Nadonal Decorative and Design Show in New York City products were on display of entire rooms and furnishings molded-in-place were found appealing and could survive the environment. Latter all structures (wall, roof, etc.) buildings were successfully built from interlocking extruded PVC

Monsanto house in Disneyland, California designed by MIT (Courtesy of Monsanto)

hollowed sandwich-ribbed panels that were filled with insulation material (PUR foam, etc.), concrete, or other materials. Also building structures were made from extruded PS foam logs that were heat-bonded wrapped in dome shaped structures, RP filament wound room structures and support pillars, and so on Fig 4.37 and 4.38.

Monsanto's house of the future (Fig. 4.37) located in Disney Land, FL was built during 1957 of practically all glass fiber-TS polyester RP; other plastics also used and reinforced concrete (foundation). MIT professors designed it. View (a) shows the four U-shaped monocoque structural cantilever beams each 16 ft from the square center foundation. View (b) shows load bearing requirements of the cantilever beams. View (c) is a sectional view of the house.

This main attraction was subjected to winds, tornadoes, earthquakes, and subjected to the movement of people that simulated a century of use. After two decades it was replaced to locate another scene. At that time it was determine the structure remained in tact as it was produced initially. It basically did not deflect. It was almost impossible to destroy by the conventional wrecking procedures. They had to actually cut it up

Figure 4.3£ Dow house of the future

Figure 4.3£ Dow house of the future

into small sections and then use wrecking balls, etc.

The Dow's house of the future (Fig. 4.38) located in Lafayette, IN was built during 1966 of practically all polystyrene foam board patented spiral generation technique producing high structurally loaded self-supporting domes. They provided their own insulation. View (a) is a model of what the finished building complex resembled. View (b) shows the lay up procedure where the PS boards are heated on site using a heating device. The operation starts on a support circular steel foundation room. These layers bonded to each other with the applied heat formed the required contours with a continuous board structure.

These self-supporting domes required no internal or external support during or after manufacture. View (c) shows the ease in cutting windows, doors, connecting hallways from dome to dome, etc. The exterior of each dome was covered with steel wire mesh and concrete followed with waterproofing. Unfortunately its limitation in building structures was its potential fire hazard. However this basic concept with appropriate plastic foam material protection provides another approach to the low cost plastic house, etc.

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