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A home that follows the sun

Watch the foundation of Canberra's first rotating house in action.

PT1M1S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-29cc9 620 349

TWENTY-EIGHT wheels, two motors and less power than a light bulb - that's all it will take to move this rotating home.

Dubbed Girasole, meaning follow the sun, the house will be able to complete a full rotation in less than 10 minutes.

Under construction in the northern Canberra suburb of Crace, the four-bedroom home designed by DNA Architects and Industrious Design will allow its owners to take full advantage of natural light and solar efficiency by rotating the house using a touch screen panel.

Rotating house

Round house ... Girasole under construction. Photo: Supplied

Builder and owner of MAG Constructions, John Andriolo, said the house would also be able to track the sun automatically.

''Girasole will encourage a change in thinking away from needing to find perfectly oriented blocks and will demonstrate that even the most ambitious undertakings can be seen as a prototype for future environmentally friendly homes,'' he said.

Mr Andriolo said the eco-friendly home also included a sloping roof hosting 10,500 kilowatt solar panels to power the home and its hot water system.

Rotating House

An aerial view of a "change in thinking". Photo: Supplied

Peter McCabe, from Industrious Design,said the design work took several months.

He said there were a number of safety elements involved in the design, which has no overhang and includes fixed components such as the walkway and verandah.

''It's only the home itself that rotates,'' he said.

Mr McCabe said the rotation also used minimal energy, due to the lack of lifting involved in the process.

''We think it's about 100 watts, which is about the same as a bright light bulb.''

Rotating homes were likely to remain a niche market, however the eco-friendly design could inspire other projects.

''It's never going to be the main type of houses people design, but it has its benefits.''

Ross Norwood, from DNA Architects, said there were two or three rotating homes in Australia, but all were different and noisier than the Canberra model.

Despite the unique design, Mr Norwood said the planning process for Girasole was relatively normal. The design did raise some initial concerns regarding privacy, but he noted that the home faced either the street or the backyard for the majority of the year.

The home, on a 704 square metre block, with a large underground water tank, is expected to be finished by February.