Retrofix, upTIM team, steps to Solar Decathlon Europe 2014 Competition

upTIM are the academic team of Timisoara  ( Romania ) made up of undergraduate,Master and PhD students from Polytechnic University and the West University from Timisoara, students who supported by professors and collaborators from all fields from:
- Arts and Design;
- Physics;
- Architecture and Interior Design;
- Civil and Instalations;
-Communication Sciences;
- Electrical;
- Mechanical;
- Sociology and Psychology.
- Management in Production and Transportation;
They will  develop the interdisciplinary project - RETROFIX for the competition Solar Decathlon Europe competition, 2014 edition, which will take place in Versailles, France.

The RETROFIX vision defines an alternative for contemporary habitation in these blocks by increasing comfort and, at the same time, making the energy consumption more efficient as well as reducing the negative environmental impacts of these neighborhoods.

- Reconfiguring the space at neighborhood level, the block of flats and the apartments
- Reducing energy consumption per unit by standard passive rehabilitation;
- Integration of renewable energy, particularly solar energy;
- Informing the community about sustainable lifestyle.

RETROFIX prototype

The prototype will be exhibited at Versailles between 16 June and 19 July 2014 and it synthesizes the values of the RETROFIX vision within an exhibition pavilion . The apartment on the top level to which a vertical extension is attached (on the terrace roof) will illustrate, in a practical way, how the RETROFIX block works.

By redesigning an apartment, Retrofix  focus on the individual and his contemporary living needs, demonstrating the fact that it is possible to reconfigure the dwellings designed in the 1970s in a sustainable manner to provide comfort and the necessary space a contemporary family requires.

The prototype will enables to test innovative solutions proposed in the real context and the actual experimentation of the benefits that residents have from the project.

As a separate item, team will  follow the certification of the prototype after the most rigorous Standard of sustainable buildings, the Living Building Challenge, which includes:
• energy independence
• Independence from the water network
• environmentally friendly building materials with low environmental impact

The Solar Decathlon Europe 2014 Competition

At the moment, team implement a vast program of conferences, workshops, expositional fairs and other events where promote the Retrofix project together with the partners, the sponsors and the upTIM supporters.

The upTIM team is on the 3rd place on the complementary list of the competition. Because of this, the Retrofix prototype will be built in the solar village, at the Versailles Palace and exhibited for 2 weeks, during the jury evaluation, together with other solar houses, built by teams of students from the entire world.

Between August-December 2014, for 5 months, team will exhibit the project inside a commercial center for:
• accessibility
• large numbers of visitors
• higher visibility of our partners

Starting with January 2015, team will exhibit the Retrofix prototype in the University Campus in Timisoara, Romania, until December 2016, as a study support for all the UPT and UVT students and teachers. During these 2 years, the upTIM project will become an experimenting and education object for the future engineers and artists, promoted as a result of the research of the university environment in Timisoara, in the field of alternative energies.

Author : Mihai Vintila

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