van Aubel

An award-winning innovative solar design practice that brings solar energy into daily life.

The studio is creating lasting change through solar design, integrating solar power seamlessly into our environments such as in buildings and objects.

Most notable works are the Solar Roof of Netherlands Pavilion at the World Expo 2020 in Dubai, Sunne, Current Table and Power Plant.


Read More




images by Emma Elston and Britt Berden

The world’s population is growing, and so is the demand for food. New technologies make farming more efficient, but require considerable amounts of energy.  What if we could tackle both our world’s energy and food problems? What if we can harvest both electricity and food within one system using the power of the sun?

Power Plant is a greenhouse that uses transparent solar glass to power it’s indoor climate; harvesting both food and electricity to grow the plants of the future, using the power of design. By placing Power Plant onto rooftops we can reduce food miles by growing food to supply directly on the place we need it.

This research hopes to contribute towards the energy transition in the agricultural sector. The solar glass powers a hydroponic system, which pumps around nutrient water, saving up to 90% of water usage compared to traditional soil farming. In addition to sunlight, coloured LED lights enhance plant growth, increasing the yield by up to 4 times.

Power Plant demonstrates that botanical tech can be embedded in the urban environment to educate people to bring the future of farming into our cities.

Power Plant

In collaboration with The New Institute, architect Emma Elston, researcher Yasmine Ostendorf , Physee and University of Amsterdam.


Solar Futures

The Solar Biennale

Studio Dialogue 3

Studio Dialogue 2

Studio Dialogue 1

Solar Democracy

Studio film Nieuwe Instituut


Foam China

Foaming expanding porcelain.

Foaming volcanic rock

This is an impression of a research trip to the island of Stromboli by James Shaw and Marjan van Aubel.