2019.033 Star Dome

Architecture as Camping

STAR DOME (Download the PDF: STAR DOME)  is a conceptual public art project that imagines a future humanity that can live with 1/10th the material, energy and resources that we use today. Referred to as ‘Factor 10’ design, the concept represents that in order to support future populations on a finite Earth, a radical simplification (1/10th our current consumption) of lifestyles may be required. More than 50% of the world already lives this way, so for many, this is an upgrade. 

STAR DOME imagines future residential dwellings as a hybrid between the static structures we have become accustomed to, with a kind of semi-nomadic, tent-like structure. STAR DOME is however more durable than any tent, as a steel shell structure treated to resist the elements.

STAR DOME, as a ‘stellated icosahedron’ is stronger than conventional structures because of its advanced geodesic load-distributing geometry. Optimal Volume to Surface ratio makes it easy to heat and cool, providing a great interior space, with a minimal footprint.

Lighter and easier to assemble than any cabin or shed, STAR DOME is a hybrid shelter that provides 100m2 of living area and 34m3 of volume. Our proprietary F+SIPS+F structural panels comprise interior and exterior finishes, structure and insulation. The panels are precision laser cut in Canada from Stainless Steel, Titanium or any other sheet metal material.

Nomadic cultures adapted to locations where life is most readily sustained to both optimal climates but also to ensure food security. In an uncertain future, resilience and portability, could allow the freedom to follow one’s dreams but also one’s best opportunities.

To that end, STAR DOME can be easily disassembled and relocated. STAR DOME’s origami-like modular structures come in a wide array of shapes and sizes, and can be horizontally inter-connected to create complexes of structures.

Costing a tiny fraction of Tiny Home projects and RV’s, STAR DOME boasts unmatched air- tightness, insulation values and durability for any dwelling in its class. A wide range of additional accessories are also available:

  1. Off-grid energy systems (400Ah Lifepo4 + PV) with or without PV Panels
  2. Composting toilet
  3. Berkely bulk carbon gravity water filters 
  4. Rainwater collection system
  5. Kitchen Cabinets
  6. Davenport Sofabed
  7. Bunkbed/Loft
  8. Shelving Units
  9. Lunos HRV

STAR DOME Base Model

 45 Laser Cut GV Metal F+SIPS+F Frames

  1. 45 Pre-Cut Sheets G1S Canadian DF Plywood Interior Panels
  2. 45 Panels Pre-Cut Rockwool R16 Insulation
  3. Precut Floor System
  4. All Req’d Assembly Hardware

$20,000.00* CAD + HST

Conventional Construction

Conventional construction comprises multiple layers of materials (typically 10-12 layers), and each layer has an associated labour input. As construction costs in Canada are typically ~50% labour and ~50% materials, each reduction of materials and construction layers, results in a cost savings of both material costs and labour costs.



Like with our OHOME SIPFS panels shown above, Finishes are integral to the Structural and Insulation aspects of the panels

STAR DOME Panels comprise just three layers,

STAR DOME Panels comprise just three layers,

  1. an exterior skeletal panel that doubles as the exterior finish and features an integral structural edge frame,
  2. that forms an interior  insulation cavity
  3. A third plywood layer forms the air-tight, and aesthetically ‘cozy’ interior finish. 

STAR DOME Resilience

Shipping containers flipped by Hurricane Dorian but intact, Abaco, Bahamas, 2019. What if residential structures were based on rigid exteriors and securely anchored to the earth? Would Bahamians be able to more quickly recover from the destruction wrought by Hurricane Dorian? STAR DOME is strong like a container, but connected with a single, deep, ‘dead-man’ anchor at the centre to resist uplift and overturning.



STAR DOME Panels Form a rigid, unitized assembly that can be centrally anchored. The property or radial symmetry mean that any external force, whether it be water or wind, results in a rotation force (moment) that is immediately resisted by the structure itself, which then forces a central anchor cable into tension, which is connected to a single buried foundation anchor, which resists both the forces of uplift and overturning. The stainless steel structure is resistant to rot, fire, and a wide range of other natural forces that would destroy other construction materials. Even in the case of damage to interior plywood or insulation layers, these can be easily repaired or replaced, as the rigid steel shell is the permanent centre of value in any future home.

STAR DOME can also be configured in a CUBE variant, where multiple CUBE structures can be laterally attached to make larger spaces.

Images from our test panel mockups shown to right.

Why is this proposed as a conceptual art project? Because solutions, even sensible ones, cannot readily be processed as such by the dominant idioms of lifestyle and housing in developed nations. However, if conceptual art can generate a dialogue on these topics, there is hope that better solutions can be found and funded for refugee camps, areas where populations have been displaced by climate disasters. Ultimately, we may start to imagine communities of durable smaller dwellings as an affordable alternative to our own forms of housing in the developed world.


Cube configuration shown above – 3 full modules and one half module (porch)
  • 48 Pre-Cut Sheets G1S Canadian DF Plywood Interior Panels
  • 48 Panels Pre-Cut Rockwool R16 Insulation
  • Precut Floor System
  • All Req’d Assembly Hardware

$24,000.00* CAD + HST

*pricing under development and subject to change

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