The Many Architectural Applications of Shipping Containers vol.8

An interesting phenomenon related to shipping container architecture is that it has also pushed the development of other technology. One these technologies is water recycling and power generation technologies that have already been applied in container greenhouses.

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Companies such as Freight Farms and PodPonics have introduced a new business model that converts second hand shipping containers into high-quality greenhouses that can be relocated almost everywhere. The technology associated with the business ensures a safe plantation of fruits, herbs and vegetables.

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Damien Chivialle‘s model of urban farm units (UFU) has a system that uses live fishes and to to fertilize and recycle the farms water. Every container has a fish tank whose water flows in a closed circuit. The fish feces are broke into pieces that are utilized as fertilizers. The system also produces some methane for the farms secondary energy source. (source)

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One major advantage of container farms is that now farms can be located closer to the places where the food will be eaten. Thereby, say, restaurants can minimize their shipping costs and still offer their customers fresh and high quality food. What’s more the greens are produced without any chemicals cutting the amount of pesticides to zero.

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Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft has also contributed to container related power producing technology. His competition for designing toilets for developing countries has produced many ideas including Duke University’s innovation. The creative solution sanitizes human waste and creates electricity as a by-product. You can read more about it in our former article.

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If you are looking for containers to start or expand your business, we in Shanghai Metal Corporation can offer them. We have many kinds of containers with different door solutions. You can check our website for further details or send us a message through this form. Check also our social media platforms for new updates.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and Original articles: Singularityhub, Designboom, Forbes, Overgrow the System, Pando Daily, Motionpictures blog

Continue to chapter 9.

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Bill Gates’s Shipping Containers Turn POOP into Energy!

Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft literally threw millions of dollars into toilet as he together with his wife invested $42 million in a competition of designing toilet systems for developing countries. In the competition Duke’s Pratt School of Engineering presented a creative solution that uses shipping containers to sanitize human waste.

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The university was offered a $1.18 million grant of its idea of turning human waste into energy.  The sanitation solution that starts with the individual and the toilet, includes the storage, transportation and treatment of human waste, and ends, ideally, with safe, usable by products such as fertilizer, fuel or clean water.

As the diagram above shows, human waste goes to an underground shipping container. This 20-foot shipping container uses enough heat and pressure to drive the internal water into so called ‘supercritical phase‘. Supercritical water can oxidize the waste and produce a sterile combination of water, carbon dioxide and salts. It also produces a lot of heat that can be directed back to the system or, say, to a power generator.

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The World Health Organization has stated that there 2.4 billion people that do not have access to any type of improved sanitation facility. In addition, about two million people die every year of diarrheal diseases; most of them being children under five years of age. Just like container hospitals and Coca-Cola’s container kiosks, the new container toilet system is a new example of how shipping containers can save lives!

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Shipping containers are an excellent tool for conducting CSR campaigns in developing countries. As the examples of Coca-Cola, Samsung and now Bill Gates go to show, shipping containers are worth more than their steel structure. It is the value that comes from the creative minds utilizing containers that makes a difference. We in Shanghai Metal Corporation are really proud of offering these instruments. Please see more information about our shipping containers in our website or just send us an inquiry. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.

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Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: Top 10 rate, The World Health Organization, Duke University, Inhabitat, Treehugger