The Nature House, North Norway
Aspirational Norwegian couple create a ‘Grand Designs’ style geodesic dome home
Inspired by the Nature House in Sweden, the Hjertefølgers wanted a large glass dome to cover an entire home and garden on their 7000m² remote island site near Bodo, in the Arctic Circle.
Their vision was to create a sustainable eco home and way of life for their family that would be beautiful, ecological and healthy.
The Hjertefølgers, aware of the robust properties of a geodesic dome, wanted a dome to provide a strong glass cover to their home. So, as an established glass geodesic dome company, they approached Solardome Industries.
Solardome have long been an advocate of sustainability in its products and practices and so took on the challenge to make this environmental eco home a reality.
In order to fulfil their dream of green living the Hjertefølgers needed the dome to:
- provide complete weather protection from the high winds and extreme snow loadings of its location
- dramatically reduce heating bills of the cob-built house; provide an environmentally friendly way of maintaining a uniform temperature throughout the year; and be strong and long lasting
- reduce ultraviolet radiation and minimise building maintenance
To help create a self-sustainable way of life, the dome also needed to act as a greenhouse to allow the Hjertefølgers to grow an abundance of plants and produce that would not normally survive in the extreme Northern European climate.
A dome to cover a three-storey home
The Hjertefølgers’ project used our SOLARDOME® PRO system.
This scalable system, which is optimised for custom geodesic dome designs between 8m and 25m in diameter, was ideal for the Nature House. It is an incredibly strong and robust design that can withstand the extreme snow loadings buildings can be subjected to in the Arctic Circle.
A 15m diameter dome was sufficiently large enough to cover the house and garden which comprised of a 200m² three-storey house, an 80m² garden, and a further 100m² rooftop garden.
The build in brief
It took just three weeks for the 15m diameter, 7.5m tall dome to be built, after which construction of the eco-home began under the cover and protection of the glass dome.
“The Solardome team have been fantastic throughout. They have been polite, reliable and very hard working. The end result is breathtaking. It feels better than we could have ever imagined.”
Geodesic domes are amazingly strong structures and have a comparatively low amount of materials. This in turn means that deep foundations were not necessary, and therefore have very low impact on the environment. The aluminium frame used has a structural lifespan of over 100 years and doesn’t require regular maintenance.
This dome contains 360 glass panels and a total length of 832m of recycled aluminium for the frame. The spherical design of a dome means it requires 30% less building materials than conventional rectangular structures enclosing the same space. Their dome home includes a set of double doors, 11 windows, five of which are digitally controlled, and a large door aperture to allow access to an outdoor decking area.
This innovative build has brought the community together as friends, family, and volunteers from the local area have all been involved in its creation. The Hjertefølger family is now living in their Nature House. Their lifetime dream of creating a sustainable, self-contained environment has become a reality.
“Our house is amazing – we have been blown away by the magnificence of the dome and the life it is helping us to lead.”
At a glance
|Client||Benjamin & Ingrid Hjertefølger|
|The challenge||To provide a glass dome to cover a house and partial garden and be able to withstand the extreme wind and snow loading conditions in the Arctic Circle.|
|The solution||SOLARDOME® PRO|
|Dome specification||Diameter – 15m
Height – 7.5m
Volume – 919m3
Floor area – 177m2
Able to withstand over 4KN/m² of snow loading and wind speeds exceeding 31m/s
6mm single-glazed toughened glass, double doors, 11 windows, 5 of which are digitally controlled, and a large aperture linking the internal house to the outside area
Exterior metal components polyester powder coated white