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Splitterwerk Architects Build BIQ House Green Through And Through

34,000 KWH. That's the amount of heat energy—roughly three times more than the average American home uses in a year—generated annually by the algae-filled walls of Splitterwerk Architects' sustainable BIQ house. The five-story structure, which will be unveiled at the International Building Exhibition in Hamburg, Germany, in March, has a facade of glass panels brimming with fast-growing microalgae. By harnessing the miracle of photosynthesis, the plants can convert light into enough heat and biomass energy to power the entire zero-carbon building.

A version of this article appeared in the March 2013 issue of Fast Company magazine.