WikiHouse is a project that applies the concept of Open Source Design to architecture. The idea is to print patterns on a plate of plywood, which are then mechanically cut by a milling machine – resulting in a kind of construction set.
Alastair Parvin, the initiator of WikiHouse, explains his project in the video below.
In the video below, a more elaborate example of the WikiHouse method is given.
And this video demonstrates actual construction of a WikiHouse.
An important aspect of WikiHouse is that specific designs are released under the creative commons license, which allows people to use other people’s design into their projects.
Being a kind of pre-fabricated housing, WikiHouse is an interesting concept to be used in orbital space habitats as it allows to build homes quickly. Plywood could be created from fast-growing Bamboo species.
In order to protect the construction against fire, the wall could be padded with some fire resistant material that will delay the fire long enough for the inhabitants to escape and for the arrival of the fire brigade.
According to the WikiHouse FAQ their designs are supposed to last for at least 60 years. This fits rather well with our believe that land in a space settlement should be public property and should be available to individuals through lease (e.g. for 99 years).