This proof of concept model of a portable solar power installation was commissioned to function as designer’s aide in configuring the size and spacing of the internal components, and to present the concept to a competition panel. Ultimately, the process of making the model became a dialogue between Amalgam and BRE Group, which informed the design process and helped them better understand their overall goal – and assisted them in successfully securing the commission to move into production.
BRE Group wanted to convey a certain level of functionality in the model, and the conversations included how best to make these features function at scale with minimal compromise – bearing in mind the model had to be held, interacted with and taken apart, while remaining a scaled-down prototype and tolerance designer’s tool.
Part of our solution was to construct the model almost completely from 0.75mm steel, which allowed us to fabricate a strong structure without compromising scale by thickening up any wall sections. During the collaborative process we designed a mechanism to allow the upper portion of the unit to open and close smoothly without slamming shut, and for magnetised side doors to hold fast against the main chassis when closed.
These features combined to make an engaging proof of concept model that allowed the designers to review and develop the design, and unambiguously communicate their intentions to the competition panel.
Our goal was to better realise our design intentions by having a live example of our concept drawings, and the final product is even better than we anticipated. Many thanks to the entire team.
Thomas Bassett, BRE Group