SDE21_Urban Hub

sketch Urban Hub Perspective View

Project Concept

Solar Decathlon Europe (SDE21_Urban hub) is an international competition in Wuppertal City (DE) that challenges the participants to design self-sustainable buildings. We merge renewable energy, sustainability, and energy transition into our hub and propose the information of the SDE21 event and energy transition in an accessible way for the visitors. The topic of the energy transition, due to the necessity of environmental protection, is a priority nowadays. Therefore, we want to raise people's awareness of using renewable energy with new possibilities and technologies by their competition.



Area View


Area View


Site View

There are some special features on-site that convinced us to select this site for our project:
  1. Being close to the cultural center of “Bahnhof Mirke”
  2. Being in the center of the competition site and sharing information about the competition
  3. Close to the central Bahnhof (17 minutes by walking)
  1. Getting direct enough sunlight to fulfill the demand of solar panel
  2. Having enough space to provide enough space for the user to interact with the urban hub

Media / Information Concept



Smartphone Life Cycle

Second-hand smartphones are our main media to display texts, photos, and videos of each topics. We attach them to the façades, controlling with JavaScript. The information includes 6 categories: Competition 18 Teams, MediaArchitecture Idea, SDE21 Information, Renewable Energy, Energiewendebauen, and OPV Introduction.

Interaction Procedure


Smartphone Layout on Media Façades

Competition 18 Teams

sketch We used the flags of the teams to represent the buttons. After clicking the buttons, visitors could get more information about the participant team.

MediaArchitecture Idea

sketch The keywords of our media architecture idea, by clicking the keywords visitors could explore how was the urban hub develop.

SDE Competition Information

sketch The main colors of our media were evaluated from the „Solar Decathlon Europe“ logo, and we made the color more harmony to engage in our urban hub.

Renewable Energy

sketch Besides solar energy, nowadays still exist different options for renewable energy, which gives more possibilities for environment-friendly.


The energy transition is a main point of the competition, from the information of the official website it divides into seven categories. For each category, visitors could click to understand the aim of the competition.

Architectural Details

Site Plan


West Elevation


We design 13 rectangular columns, adjusting the size and form by the human scale and information delivered way. The differential height of modules plays with the sunlight to project diverse shadows and reflections.

Exploded Diagram



  1. Locate and adjust side frames on the site.
  2. Punch back & front frames altogether.
  3. Install the safety unit for batteries and facilities.
  1. Attach smartphones and glass panels to the front.
  2. Install side panels from button to top.
  3. Install OPV on the top and south, connect to the safety unit.

Materials & Energetic Concept


Polycarbonate (PC)

PC-panels are manufactured exclusively from post-industrial waste.

Second-hand Smartphones

Smartphones contain precious metals that can be recycled, and we only use secondhand smartphones from the donation.

Recycled Steel

The most recycled material due to its inherent magnetism and economical value, the infrastructure, and the incentive for recycling steel is prevalent.

Glass Panels for Phones

Glass could be recycled entirely without loss in quality.




OPV Solar panels

Energetic Concept

The requirements of the SDE urban_hub include year-round mobility, self-sufficient, thus, energy production and efficiency come to our first onsideration. The structure introduces orientation to the south, 30° roof angles, which applies to different locations, and the length to width ratio was adapted to the OPV unit.

OPV Solar panels (Organic Photovoltaic)

To promote and experiment with the newest technology, OPV Solar Panels. Although they are developing, having only 10 % energy transfer efficiency, 1/2 of silicon-based PV, we used, therefore, rooftops but also south-sided facades to increase as much surface. Furthermore, OPV has 3 advantages: containing ithout toxic materials, energy payback in 3 months, and production-consumption energy is only 1/10 of conventional.


Lead Acid Solar Batteries

As research, 90% of recycled batteries are lead-acid, every part of them could be recycled. Considering our energy consumption, OPV efficiency, and structure surface, we install 13 batteries to store the energy.

Energy Plan


Idea Realization & Exhibition


Addtional Information

Team Members:

  • Lennart Oberlies (Media Realization, Architectural/Media Concept)
  • Paulina Chwała (Modeling, Rendering, Architectural/ Energetic Concept)
  • Ruo-Xuan Wu (Visual Design, Location, Media/ Information Concept)
  • Shahab Tahmasebi (Material, Transportation)
  • Tobias Mathes (3D printing, Documentaion)
  • Hiwot Girma Manaye (Architectural Construction)


MediaArchitecture (project module)

Finished Date:

February 2020


Dr. Reinhard König, Prof. Andreas Kästner, Prof. Bernd Rudolf, Dr. Sabine Zierold


Photoshop / Illustrator / Revit / AutoCAD


1.9 (Best 1 / Worst 5)

Feature Colors: