Ikea creates scale model of village to test self-sufficient solar neighbourhood

Swedish furniture manufacturer Ikea has unveiled SolarVille, a 1:50 scale model neighbourhood showing how communities can be energy self-sufficient.

Danish architect SachsNottveit designed the miniature, wooden village to demonstrate the system working in real time.

The little households create energy from solar panels and other renewable sources and purchase excess energy from each other, creating a closed circuit microgrid.

The network uses a storage system regulated with blockchain technology to manage energy transactions and let people trade directly with each other. 

Ikea says that 1.1 billion people around the world still have little or no access to electricity, and SolarVille shows a way for people to get electricity without connecting to centralised energy networks, which are expensive to build.

In a report called "A Brighter Tomorrow", the firm argues that if humanity could capture just a small fraction of the energy hitting the earth from the sun, clean electricity could be available to all.

SolarVille is on display at Space10’s gallery in Copenhagen until the end of March, opening hours are available here.

Ikea recently developed a curtain that it says is capable of reducing indoor air pollutants.

Images courtesy of Ikea/Space10

Story for GCR? Get in touch via email: [email protected]

Latest articles in News