System Rethinks Walls, Water Tanks


An Arizona master auto mechanic says he has developed a concrete wall system that holds water.

Randy Young, of Tucson, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund prototypes of his thermal mass invention.

Walls 2.0 “rethinks the wall” as a rainwater storage tank system that is adapted to architectural design.

Concrete walls that are filled with water feature excellent thermal qualities, enabling passive heating and cooling for the structure, the inventor said.

Typical water storage tanks require internal coatings that must be reapplied regularly, and plastic and steel tanks have a limited service life, according to the campaign description.

Walls 2.0 provides a more “sustainable solution,” using technology that has been around more than 40 years, Young says.

The walls are built using Krystol Internal Membrane, a technology that when added to liquid concrete builds crystals in the concrete pores, making it fully dense and waterproof.

Young says his previous versions of the modular system were too costly and did not perform as planned. This version resolves those issues, he says.

Installing Prototypes, Backers

With the funds raised, Young plans to install prototypes of his system at the Watershed Management Group’s headquarters in Tucson. He has already obtained approval for construction via the city's building department.

WMG provides community-based workshops, offers certifications, and advocates for water and building policies and regulations.

Randy Young / Kickstarter

Previous versions of the water-in-the-walls storage system were too expensive and did not function properly, according to the Kickstarter description.

Young says that he could probably obtain private funding for the patent-pending system, but that he opted for a crowdsourcing campaign so as not to sacrifice his mission. He wants to donate 20 percent of all profits to help provide access to clean drinking water to people around the world.

The Kickstarter campaign for Walls 2.0 ends Nov. 14. As of Monday (Oct. 20), only $1,317 of the $60,000 goal had been reached.


Tagged categories: Architecture; Building Envelope; Concrete; Design; Energy codes; Energy efficiency; North America

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