A 400-sq.ft house can be folded into a 5’X5’ box! Though on the first note appears highly unbelievable. The 4th year civil engineering students of IIT Madras recently demonstrated a prototype of the house. The project won the Azim Premji University’s National Level Social Enterprise Idea Challenge that took place in Hyderabad recently.
Just like a telescope can be folded and made bigger or smaller, the prototype too is built on this telescopic principle. The prototype also has inbuilt facilities such as restrooms, power, water and heating connections that can be run with external power sources. Efforts are on to integrate solar power systems into the structure.
The portable house is made of steel and aluminum and is ideal shelter during situations of disasters and for refugees. It is more durable than conventional tents and can last for 15 years. The house is also cost effective in the sense that it doesn’t cost more than Rs 2.5 lakh per unit. The students who are part of this project are planning to set up a start-up based on this idea and the project is also part of the incubation program of their institute.