Can buildings breathe through from its pores like its from sci-fi movies? Now, this can be possible thanks Breathing Skins Project developed by German engineer Tobias Becker. Based on the concept of biomimicry (an approach to innovation that seeks sustainable solutions to human challenges by emulating nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies) it can adjust their permeability to control the necessary flow of light, matter and temperature between the inside and the outside. Long story short, the system allows air through holes and makes buildings ‘’breathe’’.
The technology mainly consists of two glass surfaces sandwiching the pneumatic muscles. In the area between the two glass panels, only a slight underpressure is required to opening each muscle. Becker thus claims that operating a breathing skin façade would require minimal energetic input. This sophisticated yet simple innovation allows the façade to be free of any visible technical components, providing a sleek and seamless finish.
In addition to these performative benefits, the constantly changing appearance of these façades provides a striking interplay between the exterior natural environment and interior living spaces.
Breathing Skins was awarded the AIT award for ‘Best in Interior and Architecture 2016’. It is currently one of the selections for Berlin’s Green Product Award. The international competition recognises innovative and sustainable products and services around the world.