Starting in late 1994 we began development on a structure called the Lotus Dome. The logo above is an aerial plan view of a 90' diameter dome and the designs and engineering continue to evolve. They are designed to be pre-fabricated, modular, portable and self-sustaining. Such facilities can be used for any purpose that would benefit from an open floor plan.
The technologies for such structures already exist and as emerging technologies become available, the domes will only become more efficient. They could be used as anything from housing units or classrooms to health-care or performance and conference facilities. The domes are expected to function quite well from 0 to 50 degrees latitude (roughly, in the North, the Seattle/Boston/London/Paris range) and, with pre-fabrication in mass quantities, they are expected to be able to be produced for as little as $50US per square foot.
As the dome design is free from any straight lines, it is inherently flexible. The strength of the curved, pre-stressed members, which result in compressive rather than tensile loading, is so great, however, that it will probably never flex to the point of being noticeable. Constructed from lightweight, non-flammable, virtually indestructible materials the domes will sustain almost any act of nature excluding direct contact with molten lava or raining boulders. As the domes are modular, recycle-able materials will be used wherever possible. The design can be scaled to any size, limited only by minimum ceiling height requirements. When clear, the variable-opacity surface of the dome serves as a protective membrane, yet allows for full awareness of the beauty of our planet. Fading the variable-opacity surface to opaque provides privacy and reflects solar heat. With a color-coordinated or reflective surface treatment, the organic shape of the domes allows them to blend harmoniously into natural surroundings. Our intention is to provide a controlled environment that is both simple and elegant so that people might have the opportunity to recognize just how little they really need to live in tranquillity and comfort.
Last, but not least, the portability of the designs make it possible for them to be assembled in pristine, natural settings without degrading the quality of the land: when removed, all that need remain would be footprints and memories. (In fact, I encourage you to think of the Lotus Dome as an "ultra-luxury tent.") With these domes, and the many other tools now becoming available, we can finally begin to utilize our technological capabilities to replenish and restore our planet, and thus come full circle to an understanding of our presence here on Earth as a sacred responsibility.
We are currently looking for an inspired partner(s) to assist us in taking these designs and technologies to the next step, which is the construction and fine-tuning of a working prototype. After the prototype is finished and available to the public, I will be posting information regarding engineering, structural analysis, cost analysis, materials, fabrication, transportation and all sorts of fun stuff! Until then, if you have specific questions, please just drop me a note. Naturally, there is much information that is still proprietary, but I will answer questions as much as possible!
Please note that all designs and support materials are registered with The Register of Copyrights, Copyright Office, Library of Congress, United States of America and are the sole property of Richard Fairbanks, Fairbanks Productions, Inc. Thank you for your interest in our work!
For more information, send an email to information@LotusDome.com