vincent callebaut architectures: physalia amphibious garden to clean waterways
vincent callebaut architectures: physalia   amphibious garden to clean waterways vincent callebaut architectures: physalia   amphibious garden to clean waterways
jan 13, 2010

vincent callebaut architectures: physalia amphibious garden to clean waterways

physalia – floating agoraall images courtesy of vincent callebaut architectures




vincent callebaut architectures have designed ‘physalia’, an architectural prototype of an amphibious garden – a floating agora which is meant to clean waterways in europe. the project aims to meet the needs of maintaining a sustainable management of water resources. the roof of the structure contains a double pneumatic membrane chiseled with smooth photovoltaic solar cells.


under the hull, hydro-turbines transform the energy of the fluvial stream into hydro-electricity. the surface of the vessel is made from an aluminum covering which covers the multi-hull steel structure. the silver-plated dress is covered by a TiO2 layer of anatase shapes that when reacting to ultraviolet rays, reduces water pollution. in addition to being a self-cleaning vessel, it can absorb and recycle by photo-catalytic effect. physalia is crossed in its double hull by a hydraulic network that filters the fluvial water and purifies it biologically thanks to its planted roof. the interior is divided into four thematic gardens: water, fire, earth, air.

east elevation

east elevation

green roof of phytopurification and photovoltaic pneumatic lens

steel hull construction and aluminum superstructure with view of the air garden

interior scenography – view of the water garden and earth garden


inside view of the air garden

view of physalia’s deck

potential locations for the physalia: letna, prague

thames, london

seine, paris

seine, paris

physale – starting point of the structure’s form

longitudinal section

level of the air garden

cross section

diagrams and bionic transposition of bio-luminescent pneumatophorous

  • Is it like a ship? But different?

    alex says:
  • So who gets to ride it? Do people just pay for a ride like any other boat/ferry? Doesn’t look like many people fit.

    Also, in the first render it looks like it’s totally submerged. That would be an awesome experience in the right waters…

    D says:
  • A beautiful sight and adaptable too! suits best for Dubai. Also, pple here are more participative in new ideas than anywhere in the world.

    Fasiha says:
  • the shap is just like a whale. Beautiful!

    fade says:

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