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Team Rhône-Alpes
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To answer to the problems of thickening of the cities, the Team Rhône-Alpes proposes Canopea, innovating solar project of habitat integrating qualities of the individual habitat in an urban context.

Local context

The urban territory is a limited space. In the Rhône-Alpes territory, the cities are limited by the mountains, the lakes and the rivers. That involves a rarefaction of constructible spaces.

In such a context, the buildings go up in the town centres, like the three towers of Grenoble, whereas part of the population leaves the urban zone to live in houses in the countryside. Indeed 86% of the Frenchmen have as an ideal to live in a house for its associated qualities: proximity with nature, intimacy, privative space.

We are thus in front of an inconsistency: the population of the Rhône-Alpes region is sensitive to the sustainable issues but its way of life involves commutes, pollution, traffic jams, social stress…

Hence following questionings:
How to live all together but separately?
How to live downtown while being close to nature?


To answer to the problems of thickening of the cities, the Team Rhône-Alpes proposes Canopea, innovating solar project of habitat integrating qualities of the individual habitat in an urban context.

Between urban density and quality of life

Canopea is a collective of small buildings, called “nanotowers”, which fits in a district. Each nanotower is equipped with a system of mutualized external gangways, which offers space qualities similar to those of a detached house:
- 360° of freedom,
- the possibility of going around the house,
- a tolerable proximity of vicinity,
- the pleasure of shared common spaces which increase the individual space of life,
- the presence of plantations integrated in the construction in the form of vertical farms,
- the access to public transports and services of the district,
- the centralized management of the technical systems.

Canopea proposes a habitat which combines qualities of individual house and availability of urban services.

An urban ecosystem

The district of nanotowers is thought as an ecosystem in which the elements are inter-connected to share, to optimize the functions, the services and the equipment.

It is equipped with a smartgrid in order to manage the energy exchanges according to the needs and contributions of each one. Public transport and shared electric vehicles are at the disposal of the inhabitants to move on the scale of the city. The management of the vehicles and the free parking lots is ensured by the urban community, thanks to Smartphones of the users. The first stages of the nanotowers are used as activities rooms in order to offer work places on the spot and to reduce displacements, whereas the last stages are shared spaces offering various services to the inhabitants.

The autonomy of the building is not solved anymore on its level, but on the district, the city, the territory level.

Thermal strategies

In order to live in pleasant conditions all the year, interior and external spaces of life evolve in correspondence with the seasons.


The inhabitants of the nanotowers live primarily inside housing, in the controlled thermal envelope.

Autumn/Spring (intermediate seasons):

The space of life can extend outside thanks to the opening from the walls glazed on the terrace in south-west.


Each housing has interior and external spaces protected in order to feel at the same time at home and outside, while avoiding the strong temperatures of the summer.

This space organization is supplemented by the passive and active thermal strategies:

Passive strategy

The objective is to minimize the requirements in heating and cooling according to the seasons.


To collect:

It's possible to collect the direct solar radiation in the course of the day.

To preserve:

The powerful insulating walls and the protection of the glazings constitute an envelope (skin) avoiding the heat losses and limiting the requirements in heating.

To store/diffuse:

The radiant ground heaters bring inertia to the habitat and allow a better control of the temperature: they store the calories during the day and restore them the night.
The material ground also allows a good hygrometrical regulation in the interior space of life.

To protect:

The sliding glazed walls and the entrance lock create buffer zones which avoid certain direct heat exchange between housing and outside.
Closings of the terrace provide an additional sound protection while prolonging the interior space of life.


To protect:
The heat insulation, the directional blade blinds and the protection of the shell make it possible to be protected from a too important solar radiation.

To ventilate:
Housing has opening on its four frontages, which allows a crossing ventilation natural.

Active strategy

To collect:

The roof of each nanotower is equipped with semi-transparent solar panels making it possible to produce electricity.
Moreover, photovoltaic/thermal hybrid panels are installed on the roofs of the gangways.

To heat/refresh:

The hybrid solar panels ensure, in partnership with a heat pump water/water, the production of hot water the day or cold water the night.
Ventilation also ensures part of the requirements in heating or cooling.

To ventilate:

A ventilation with double-flow associated with an air-to-air heat pump controls the temperature of the air.
Thanks to a system of dephasing, the air collected at one hour can be used later: the hot air of the day can thus be restored the night and the fresh air of the night restored the day.

To store:

Lithium-ion batteries ensure the storage of the electric power, so better erasing certain peaks of consumption or ensuring an autonomy partial of the active systems of regulation and protection of the residences.
Electric vehicles connected to the network make it possible to ensure a new and durable mobility inhabitants.

These function for the majority are provided by an accessible machine compact since the gangways, which facilitates maintenance.

The Prototype

The Canopea prototype presented at Solar Decathlon Europe 2012 is the top of a nanotower. It is a comfortable housing of 70m², overcome of a sheltered common space but not heated, that can include a laundry, a drier in the open air, an adventure playground for the children, a kitchen of summer, a inflatable swimming pool… and a unspoilable view on the mountains! This concept thus makes it possible to be at home downtown, all together, but separately.


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Fernando Monera

2/4/2019 · Resumen del borrador que regulará las condiciones administrativas, técnicas y económicas del autoconsumo, que incluye Facturación Neta (balance neto).

1-Saclima solar fotovoltaica 75 2-Revosolar solar shop 64 3-Lidersolar 31 4-Censolar 23 5-Krannich solar 19 6-Zytech solar (fabricante placas solares) 19 7-Rios renovables 11 8-Sunlab power 10 9-Promein abogados 7 10-Ecogal energia 7
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