Competition Details

SHELTER3 [Shelter Cubed]

by Ian Robertson
Co-authors: Ryan Cameron

SHELTER3 transforms quickly from compact, durable packages to a large and sturdy structure, differentiating it from existing shelters. It is light, strong, simple, adaptable, and each component can be re-used in whole or part as needed after the crisis abates.

SHELTER3 utilizes a modular design that can be adapted to any environment. Each package contains components for one shelter panel shipped inside a 2m x 140mm (6.5ft x 5.5in) stackable recycled plastic tube (which becomes a structural support member), an inflatable mat (a toughened air mattress), and a supply of bio-based expanding foam insulation. The insulation inflates the mat to create a strong, stable panel with high insulating value greater than R-20. Five panels then Velcro together to create a module of 2m x 2m x 2m, which can shelter a family of four under emergency situations.

SHELTER3 panels assemble to create a durable shelter in any environment providing thermal, moisture, and insect protection as well as collecting and storing water. Each package weighs 25kg (55lb) for lightweight shipment to disaster areas, and each shelter can be constructed in under 30 minutes. Included in each package is a waterproof ground sheet, printed with graphic, multi-lingual assembly instructions. Extra sheets can be used to create sheltered exterior spaces surrounding the modules, while the uniform cube shapes combine aesthetically to increase feelings of community and security. For longer-term use, two or more modules can be combined. Additionally, provisions such as a small supply of food or first aid equipment can be included in each package.

SHELTER3 responds to the multiple requirements for shelter housing- inexpensive but not insubstantial, light for transport with little or no infrastructure, strong enough to protect from natural elements but not environmentally damaging, and long-lasting, but not be too permanent as to discourage a return to normal life.