Hadeel Salh, Sara Tariq and Fatima Fakhroo, architecture majors at the College of Engineering at Qatar University, started work on their Passive House as part of their degree course. When they heard about the Shell Ideas360 competition, they knew they had to enter, and take the idea even further.
Sara said, “When we entered the competition, we didn’t know about the prize; we only knew that we couldn’t afford to miss out on the opportunity of sharing our plan with others.”
Entering the competition as a trio worked well, with a shared passion for architecture keeping them going. They also believe that the competition forced them to look at their idea and the business plan behind it in a completely different way.
Together, the team set out to reduce energy consumption by designing a passive house, “in Qatar the climate is really hot, so we wanted to design a house where you wouldn’t necessarily need air conditioning and therefore save on energy consumption. The plan is to build a house in such a way that it’s oriented towards the north, avoiding the sun. Creating vertical openings to let out hot air and also changing the material in the walls allow more cool air to enter the house,” Hadeel explained.
Team Passive House believes the highlight of the experience was travelling to the Netherlands for the final. “We started screaming when they told us we were in the top five,” Hadeel said. “It was unbelievable and none of us slept that night - we were too excited. We had so much fun in the Netherlands and enjoyed meeting the other teams, the judges and the Shell employees who were involved.”