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The Rooftop Fish Farm

Posted by Josh Rothman  May 17, 2012 09:13 AM

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Bored with the overexposed-yet-still-intriguing idea of an urban, rooftop farm? UrbanFarmers AG, a firm based in Zurich, has invented a new twist on the usual rooftop formula: a rooftop fish farm, enclosed in a dome which looks like a fish:

Together with our design and product strategy partner Conceptual Devices, we have developed GLOBE (hedron), a unique geodesic rooftop farm design structure which is built using natural, renewable materials such as bamboo for its central structural elements. Inside the structure, we will be utilizing UrbanFarmers AG proprietary Aquaponic system technology, growing both fish and plants in natural synergy with each other. One GLOBE (hedron) could feed a family of 4 with fresh fish and vegetables, salads & herbs - year-round.

To me, there's always something both utopian and post-apocalyptic about these sorts of projects -- after the power goes out, you could subsist for years on the produce from your GLOBE. The system is still in the early stages, and has yet to advance to a "real-world" prototype, although UrbanFarmers have a lot of experience in producing viable urban farms. You can learn more about their Aquaponics system starting at around 4:30 in this TED Talk -- many of their projects are quite large-scale.

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About brainiac Brainiac is the daily blog of the Globe's Sunday Ideas section, covering news and delights from the worlds of art, science, literature, history, design, and more. You can follow us on Twitter @GlobeIdeas.
Brainiac blogger Kevin Hartnett is a writer in Columbia, South Carolina. He can be reached here.

Leon Neyfakh is the staff writer for Ideas. Amanda Katz is the deputy Ideas editor. Stephen Heuser is the Ideas editor.

Guest blogger Simon Waxman is Managing Editor of Boston Review and has written for WBUR, Alternet, McSweeney's, Jacobin, and others.

Guest blogger Elizabeth Manus is a writer living in New York City. She has been a book review editor at the Boston Phoenix, and a columnist for The New York Observer and Metro.

Guest blogger Sarah Laskow is a freelance writer and editor in New York City. She edits Smithsonian's SmartNews blog and has contributed to Salon, Good, The American Prospect, Bloomberg News, and other publications.

Guest blogger Joshua Glenn is a Boston-based writer, publisher, and freelance semiotician. He was the original Brainiac blogger, and is currently editor of the blog HiLobrow, publisher of a series of Radium Age science fiction novels, and co-author/co-editor of several books, including the story collection "Significant Objects" and the kids' field guide to life "Unbored."

Guest blogger Ruth Graham is a freelance journalist in New Hampshire, and a frequent Ideas contributor. She is a former features editor for the New York Sun, and has written for publications including Slate and the Wall Street Journal.

Joshua Rothman is a graduate student and Teaching Fellow in the Harvard English department, and an Instructor in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He teaches novels and political writing.


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