The NewVistas Bathroom Module project seeks to develop a small and efficient prefabricated bathroom for use in homes, apartments, and commercial buildings.
Modern bathrooms sometimes incorporate fixtures and appliances that consume large amounts of water and energy. The overall function of the bathroom has received relatively little innovation over the years, but we believe significant improvements are possible. Targets: 1. Less than half of the water consumption of conventional bathrooms. 2. Efficient space usage. 3. 100% manufacturable off site.
SketchUp model depicts a 4x8 bathroom module that includes sink, toilet, and shower and provides fundamental structural integrity for a building. The module includes optimal use of ceiling storage for toiletries and clothing.
Image of a shower curtain mechanism shows magnetic attachment to the shower pad. The curtain retracts into the ceiling and is dried by mechanical squeegees.
Spreadsheet (Ovuoba. 2011) shows sources and assumptions for data indicating that the NewVistas bathroom module may use 85% less water in bathrooms than the typical US home.
Paper (Bangerter 2011) discusses different fitting options for connections in the bathroom module floor.
Traditional level-to-level transportation options are complicated, expensive, and use a lot of electricity, which makes them impractical for many living and working facilities. NewVistas seeks to design a simpler, less expensive, elevator that can be used in a wider range of applications than are currently available. Targets: 1. As safe and reliable as traditional elevators. 2. Less than half the cost.
The purpose of the lift module project is to design and prototype a lifter that efficiently transports people and goods between floors of a building.
One of the things that makes elevators expensive and energy intensive is their speed. If users can accept a slower speed, both costs and energy consumption can be reduded dramatically.
Walls made of glass can be made transparent or non-transparent and can be made "smart" for energy efficiency and optimum comfort. Targets: 1. Automatically adjusts to block or allow heat and light at different times of day or in different conditions. 2. Twice as energy efficient as traditional exterior walls.
The most effective use of wind energy is direct heating and cooling of spaces with moving air currents. Significant energy efficiencies are achievable if natural air flows can be optimized. Targets: 1. Little if any required powered assistance to keep a building at comfortable temperatures.
The workstation transforms into whatever you need by converting the counter-top to a desktop or vice versa. The worktop can move up-or-down to whatever height is best for the current task. The sink disappears too when you don’t need it out. Specific to kitchen features: replaces fixtures and appliances that consume large amounts of water and energy. Significant improvements are possible. Targets: 1. Low-water and low-energy - less than half of the water consumption of conventional kitchens. 2. Efficient space usage. 3. 100% manufacturable off site.
Excel spreadsheet providies a working outline of the different components in the NewVistas standard kitchen.
Moveable walls will enhance the flexibility and usability of space by enabling a given area to be transformed into different configurations in minutes. Targets: 1. Can be operated with a smart phone. 2. Sound transfer comparable to a traditional sheetrock wall. 3. Attractive; can be decorated. 4. Repositioning possible in less than a minute.
The motor and spool for moving the roller wall are key components. The NewVistas concept utilizes a spring loaded spool with minimal torque requirements.
Spreadsheet specifies different limitations that must be considered in the design of a curtain wall.
Document outlines the governing equations for a general wall design as well as specific applications of those equations.
Webpage describes absorptive/noise barrier quilted curtains, which may be useful in wall design.
Acoustiblok website offers useful information on transforming sound energy into trace amounts of inaudible friction energy.
DYD website describes some available motors that are safe, reliable, and handle our application well.
Paper (Stoklosa, Lee, Siljanovski, Locher 2010) describes a roll up door concept, designed at the University of Michigan. Similar to what NewVistas may want to develop.
Website of Skyfold, Inc. offers vertically folding operable walls similar in purpose to NewVistas' rolling walls.