Pneumocells are inflatable building materials that join together in a specific sequence to create a high performance structure.

Benefits

  • Reduced materials
  • Rapid assembly
  • Lightweight

Applications

  • Commercial and residential buildings
  • Temporary housing

UN Sustainable Development Goals Addressed

  • Goal 11: Sustainable Cities & Communities

The Challenge

Building materials can be costly, heavy and made of materials that are not environmentally friendly.

Innovation Details

Pneumocells are made of TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane), a 100% recyclable material. The pneumocells join together in a specific sequence to create a high performance structure, inspired by the way soap bubbles or biological cells come together to form a structure. Because they are inflatable, they use minimal materials and take up a very small amount of space prior to final assembly. The structures can be rapidly assembled in varying shapes and sizes. Single damaged components can be easily replaced, imparting substantial resilience on the structure.

Biological Model

In soap bubbles, similarly to human cells, the outer surface forms a sphere, whereby the pressure in the membrane is minimized and is equivalent in all places. The larger the diameter of the sphere, the larger the outer tension under the same air pressure. An excess of irregular pressure on the outer surface leads to an uneven pressure in the membrane, which can cause folds and eventually rip the surface.