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Regenerative Cell Factory : Elemental Harvesting - Treating the City, Treating its People

Part 2 Project 2014
Tom Murphy
London South Bank University London UK
Consideration of the future city condition of London in 2050 was the context in which this project was grounded. London has 15million people; the air is starved of Oxygen and the heat island effect has risen urban temperatures 10°. London has become poisonous to both our bodies and to our minds.
The Regenerative Cell Factory seeks to tackle this problem at both the micro and macro levels, considering the city as a diseased organism and the building as a cell to treat the city. At the same time the regenerative system is working at the micro scale by providing a new stem cell treatment to its inhabitants for a wide variety of degenerative conditions.
The building is conceived as part of a self-supporting system which is driven by several chemical and biological processes. First is the conversion of sewage into Methane and Hydrogen Sulphide by way of enzyme digestion- Methane feeds bioluminescent bacteria and algae which produce Oxygen with light as a by-product. The light illuminates spaces below a new topography and acts as passive light therapy, it also creates Oxygen which is stored and released where needed by way of the distribution network embedded within the new topography.
Hydrogen Sulphide is separated below-ground to create Sulphur for fertiliser, and Hydrogen stored in gas towers alongside Oxygen. Pure Oxygen is fired with Hydrogen to create water-vapour and useful heat in a strongly exothermic reaction which creates a strong updraft to naturally ventilate the building and heat for creating condensation at the top of the building to make fresh Water.
Condensation is harvested with a micro-scale bi-metallic mesh, structurally based on self-organising chemical bonds; geometrically perfect assimilation of volumes following Plateau’s laws. These laws inform the primary and secondary structural elements of the building, organising the cellular elements which make up the building exoskeleton and wrap the building in relation to environmental forces. The structure is deformed by its environment making it site-specific, yet still structurally efficient. A dialogue between these site forces and the necessity of the programme serves as a reminder of the need to live in balance.

Tom Murphy

Ms Lilly Kudic
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