At the beginning UFU is a project from Master 2010 "Création & Technologie Contemporaine" in ENSCI (Paris). Damien Chivialle used Google tools to design and distribute an open-source farm model, simulating a networked organisation all around the world. It’s a reflection on the impact of new digital and agronomical technologies and their influence on our vision of the territory around us. < En français >

How to supply cities with fresh products while limiting transportation?
Is there any available and non-polluted land left for farming?

Thanks to new growth-related technology like aquaponics and micro-methanation, very good yields can be obtained on a very small area, and still be environmentally friendly (organic produce and energy efficient). Housed on the roof of a container, the greenhouse is protected from urban areas. Designed as an "above ground" shared garden, this farm may be parked on the street.

Overall view

The entire device is designed with standard components: hydroponics, industrial greenhouse, scaffolding, open-top container. This equipment is intended to be scalable and evolutive.

Interior: fish pond and cleaning tank "cradle-to-cradle"

Operating principle of the aquaponics system.

The water circulates in a closed circuit in the system: the excrement of the fishes is degraded by bacteria in the sewage tank, where it is processed into minerals salts. These minerals then serve as fertilizer for the plants. Filtered by the plants, the water eventually returns to the fish pond.

To complete this symbiotic cycle, it is considered to recover methane from the sewage basin to power an alternate generator. The latter would provide both the mechanical and thermal energy for the system. In the case of installing several containers (see proposal for Montreal in the video), one can imagine filling the farm with a bio-gas plant to collect and recycle organic waste in the neighborhood.

Ladder access to the top floor

Hydroponic greenhouse on the top floor

In the street

Using a container allows for the equipment to remain secure. In addition, this can be a good way for downgraded containers to find a new career.

This project is developed as Open Source. Download the Sketchup 3D model to make your own greenhouse:

Join us into creating a virtual farming network, so that the momentum is already in place as several prototypes begin appearing around the globe.

If you want doing it in real, fill up online the formulary . Every candidate will be put on the farms map. Together we will find solutions to build your own farm.

The first container farm in Berlin.

The third farm in Brussels

A other model of UFU exists with soil bins (only vegetables production) made by Courtirey .