Future conditions of water as a limited resource are challenged by population growth, rising living standards, industrial development and increasing urbanization: all key contributors to water scarcity, and increased energy consumption in the built environment. Business-as-usual water management in the coming decades threatens already vulnerable water resources with over exploitation. The Solar Enclosure for Water Reuse (SEWR) system is a stationary concentrating solar-driven hybrid system for reclaiming onsite greywater while decreasing both primary energy consumption and solar heat gain that is associated with glazed building facades and mechanical systems. Modular cast glass geometries are shaped to redirect and capture direct solar irradiation, providing interior shading and diffuse daylight spatial conditions. Coupled with multi-barrier decontaminates building greywater effluent by inactivating pathogenic contaminants. The SEWR system prototype presents a contextual exhibition of the water cycles in the built environment by thrusting water networks out of the ground, out of centralized basement-bound greywater systems; and into proximity with the spaces, humans inhabit.

Related Research

Water Research

Sponsorship to Date:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Awards to Date:

SPARK Award Concept Design 

Architect R+D Award 

Research Teams:

SEWR team members: Anna Dyson, Jason Vollen, Matt Gindlesparger, Kristin Malone, Peter Stark, Satoshi Kiyono 
DRIPS team members: Anna Dyson, Jason Vollen, Aletheia Ida, Rahmi Ozisik, Ryan Gilbert, Andrew Saunders.

Industrial Collaborators:


Select Publications


Solar Enclosure for Water Reuse

Dyson, A. H., Vollen, J., Mistur M., Stark P., Malone K., Gindlesparger M. (2015) U.S. Patent No. 9090486B2. 

Contact us

Yale Center for Ecosystems in Architecture


Yale School of Architecture                      

180 York Street, New Haven, CT, 06511

203.432.2288 | cea@yale.edu

  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Twitter Icon
  • White Instagram Icon

© 2020 | CEA