Domes + Architecture

Domes have been a part of architecture throughout our history. Domes have been constructed out of various materials around the world for centuries - animal bones, hay, clay, bricks, metal and now concrete. You can see the influence of domes in on a grand scale in these famous architectural feats like the Taj Mahal and the US Capitol.

The dome has also served in architecture for individual homes and community buildings, stretching back for centuries. These domes have provided shelter to different cultures. The igloo is commonly considered one of the older examples. These Zulu Huts are another example of dome homes.

Now, we at HDomes are building modern domes using airform, basalt, and shotcrete. This type of dome was pioneered by the three South brothers who founded Monolithic Domes. These domes share the same amazing features that have made dome homes appealing to cultures around the world.  Dome homes and buildings are eco-friendly by using less materials and being naturally insulated.  Domes are also incredibly structurally sound and will last for decades, withstanding natural disasters such as earthquakes, fires and hurricanes.

Domes are Great for Extreme Weather!

"New Nglepen" was built after Yogyakarta suffered a massive earthquake in 2016. This video shows another way dome homes are eco-friendly and perfect for places with extreme weather.  We constructed a temperature experiment to show how narually insulated domes are!

Domes & Global Aid

We are proud to be in the 2017 DIHAD Global Aid Directory!  

HDomes builds EcoShells and monolithic Domes.  We supply the training, equipment and techniques to aid in disaster recovery and reconstruction as well as large scale urban redevelopment.  Our EcoShell construction system allows for the rapid construction of a large number of inexpensive houses and community buildings. Our structures are built using local labor and materials, the are earthquake/hurricane/fire proof with a very long life expectancy and low on-going maintenance requirements.  EcoShells provide the local community with income, skills and the ability to literally rebuild their lives. 

 

Maniche, Haiti

Maniche, Haiti

Our rapidly build community buildings can be used as schools, clinics, police stations, places of worship and food storage facilities.  By utilizing the local workforce, we give the end users a stake in the project and ownership in the finished product. We have worked for WANGO (World Association of NGO's) on a large scale reconstruction project in Indonesia and for Haiti H.E.R>O. on a large orphanage project in Haiti amongst many others.  We have build climate controlled buildings, residential and commercial, as well as large Tornado shelters for FEMA in the US and around the world.  FEMA rate our buildings as "near absolute protection." 

Together we can build communities and shelter that will last life times. 

@domes4homes

hdomes.com

Why Domes are a Solution to Global Housing Shortages

"New Nglepen" in yogyakartawas built after 2016 earthquake. 

"New Nglepen" in yogyakartawas built after 2016 earthquake. 

Domes provide a wonderful option for addressing housing shortages around the globe.

As our populations continue to grow, affordable and adequate housing is becoming increasingly imperative for communities around the globe. Housing shortages most impact the poorest countries and communities that lack a strong infrastructure to address their housing problem. Natural disasters, such as earthquakes, fires and floods also contribute to many housing shortages around the world.  

Domes are disaster proof and relatively low cost.

Domes are cost effective!  Domes will survive earthquakes, fires and floods, and last hundreds of years - giving communities in disaster prone areas future security.  Our domes are built using Basalt which does not expand or shrink with extreme weather, preventing cracks or weaknesses in the cement. Domes are also naturally very well insulated, saving communities energy.  Using the same building techniques, Domes can serve as houses, community centers, schools and medical facilities.

Building a Community

We not only build domes, we also educate people about sustainable housing, employing local contractors and workers, and empowering the community by creating a real sense of home.  The dome home community "New Nglepen" [seen above] was built after Yogyakarta suffered a massive earthquake in 2016. Dome homes provided them with eco-friendly housing, perfect for extreme weather. 

Building EcoShells Without Steel?

Why are we building EcoShells without steel? 

Steel reinforced concrete is an incredible invention that has allowed for the construction of all the major cities that exist today.  However, if water is allowed to reach the steel embedded in the concrete it corrodes the steel, causing it to expand and crack the concrete.  Most of the bridges in the US and around the world are suffering from this flaw that in some cases causes failure of the structure. 

We have started working with Basalt rebar on our EcoShell projects and have developed specific basalt products to help with the construction of EcoShells. 

rebar basalt.jpg

We are the first company to build viable EcoShells with absolutely no structural steel elements.  Using basalt to provide the tensile strength component in our concrete, we can build EcoShells that are structurally sound and will be unaffected by the possibility of steel corrosion. This allows less concrete to be used and the lifespan of the buildings to be greatly increased.

Why Domes?

Why Domes? 

We are all becoming more and more aware of how vulnerable we are to extreme weather events - fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods as well as earthquakes and drought.  There was more sad news this week as lives were lost and awful damage was caused by tornadoes in the southern United States. (https://weather.com/storms/tornado/news/severe-weather-forecast-south-high-risk-tornadoes-january-2017) 

We need to be prepared and protect ourselves from future events.  Monolithic Domes and their developing world counterpart - EcoShells are the answer in many cases. We have to realize that the old way of construction is not serving us any more and look to the future.

A Monolithic Dome was the only building left standing after a devastating tornado in Moore, Oklahoma in 2013.

A Monolithic Dome was the only building left standing after a devastating tornado in Moore, Oklahoma in 2013.

HDomes.com is in the process of making construction loans and mortgages more easily available and a large part of our work is finding a way to make the process of building domes easier and more affordable.

"Near-Absolute Protection" - FEMA

One of the most unique and desirable features of a Monolithic Dome is its durability in the face of manmade and natural disasters. Monolithic Domes been labeled by FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) as providing "Near-Absolute Protection." 

 

This stunning home in Pensacola Beach, Florida (one of the first google-image results you'll find for "Monolithic Dome" because of it's beautiful design) has survived hurricanes Ivan, Dennis and Katrina.

 

In 2013 an EF-5 Tornado devastated a large area of Moore, Oklahoma. This Dome was the only structure left standing. 

 

A concrete dome in Omak, Washington survived a wildfire in 2015, undamaged. Its owner remained safely inside the home during the fire. 

 

At the end of the day, our company's mission is to make the world a safer place to live in. 

Roman Roman Concrete Endures in Spain!

The Romans used 'opus caementicium' or conrete as we know it to build the core of their buildings like this amphitheater. They used lime pebbles and river sand as well as medium sized amphibolites (a kind of rock) as the aggregate.

The well preserved amphitheater and theater exists today in Merida, Spain - an ancient Roman town built for retired soldiers.

Roman bridge and modern hydroelectric dam in Alcantara (below)

Hurricane Matthew

Haiti has once again suffered yet another natural disaster. Obviously our thoughts are with all the people affected by the Hurricane Matthew. News of the hurricane brings back memories of the time I spent in Maniche, just inland from Les Cays on the Southwest part of Haiti. I was there three years ago to construct a forty foot diameter EcoShell for the Haiti H.E.R.O. organization. I don't have any news yet about the area although I know the EcoShell will still be standing. 

Our changing global climate has increased the number and severity of natural disasters like these. Our passion at Hdomes.com is to provide as many people and communities as possible with safe and disaster-resistant shelter.  If we can be of service please contact us. 

As news becomes available I will post some updates.

Concrete Through The Ages

Dan Hildebrand, founder of HDomes Consultation & Construction recently visited the town of Mérida in Spain.  The town was founded in 25 BC, with the name of Emerita Augusta (meaning the veterans – discharged soldiers – of the army of Augustus, who founded the city; the name Mérida is an evolution of this) by order of Emperor Augustus, to protect a pass and a bridge over the Guadiana river  Mérida is probably the best preserved of all the Roman towns in Spain and use of concrete as one of the main building components is still visible everywhere.  An amphitheater - where gladiators fought, a theater - where plays were performed and the Circus Maximus - where chariot races were held, and a huge viaduct that supplied the town with water are all still visible.