Thanks to research and advancement in building science, today we can design and build homes that are not only proven to resist natural hazards, but that can also resist human actions and events including unwarranted forced entry, ballistics, blast events, intentional fires, even chemical, biological and nuclear threat events. We have proven technology which has been made affordable by our teams own innovation and new products we have successfully used. We can do the same for your home.
Often, natural disasters and man made events coincide with a power outage of unpredictable duration. Some people also believe a time is coming where these events will be more frequent and longer lasting. Such as the rolling brownouts in California, power outages long term after Cat 5 Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico in 2017, or the loss of power and infrastructure in failed nations such a Venezuela due to government and social issues.
To sustain life for any extended period, the secure home must provide continuous clean air, clean water, provide for removal of human waste, provide us with an acceptable temperature range for living, and protect our families and our critical provisions such as medications and foods.
Nearly all of these critical functions can continue to function in a grid down environment without an off grid or grid down plan for power continuance.
There are many forms of off grid power, Solar PV, Wind, Micro Hydro, generators, Wood Gasification, etc. there is no one size fits all. However not all off grid power sources make for good grid down power source. For example: Solar PV and Wind both have fragility that make then unsuitable to be reliable in extreme weather or man made vents. Often the research into a grid down power supply comes back to looking at fossil fuel generators, gas, propane, diesel.
However, a finite fuel supply means a finite amount of time to operate grid down. Sometimes this is fine. A typical home size propane tank and generator can supply a homes power for a day or two. But if the grid down even lasts a week, as is not uncommon at our home in remote rural Oregon for downed power lines for winter ice storms.
Roads too icy for propane resupply or demand by others has depleted the local supply.
Part of the solution we have developed includes reducing the power demand load by over 90% compared to typical homes. This allows a home to have a smaller generator that uses less fuel and the same finite fuel supply can last 4x or 5x longer than your next door neighbor’s standard home.
We also look at what technologies apply best to each local client site for further energy load demand reductions, and we look at redundant or alternative sources of on site power generation. Especially continuous or renewable energy sources.
With the right combination of technologies, it is possible to have a home that can function comfortable off grid for an extended period, or even indefinitely.
Other topics we help clients with in the grid down home category is high security home planning, security consulting, and long term low maintenance food production, micro farming.
We recognize competence and expertise in total home security planning should never be performed as a sole professional actively and prefer to bringing highly qualified and experienced security professionals, many of whom hold even higher level of professional security certification, and/or were former seasoned elite special operations war fighter such as Navy SEALS Army Rangers and Special Forces or Marnie force Recon types of individuals. Our architect’s military background allows our lead architect to communicate and coordinate with these types of professionals in a mutually understandable terminology to successfully help our clients even when their security needs are very acute.
Often the overall solution to security planning requires owners are trained in how to respond to a human threat event. This takes discernment training and conditioned reactions and even some equipment training. We have professionals who can assist our clients with these core skills. Even for clients with zero desire to take action against another person, we can help them understand how to prepare for a suitable passive defense.
We are aware on the fast pace of continual advancement on security technology and recognize that every year our electronic security consultants bring to our client newer and more advanced technology to help client, we were an early adopter of FLIR Thermal optics and Thermal Fence technology as well as an early adopter for the use of drones to provide our clients with far superior situational awareness of human movements of concern on and adjacent to their own properties. We also experimented with many of the new consumer driven product in this market segment such as ring.com and blink.com and saw the limitation and failures of these systems first hand. As new tech continues to be brought to market will will continue to push for the best, most secure and robust electronic security solutions for our clients.
Grid Down Food Supply
While clean air and clean water rank higher in urgency and importance for the protection of lives in grid down homes, we must also consider on site food production processing, storage and preparation.
We have researched and are continually experimenting and refining “Micro Farming” and “Urban Gardening” principals for over 7 years at properties we lived in and owned. We did not come into this topics as experts but just as adults who grew up in active gardening families . Standing on the shoulders of experts such as Novella Carpenter and Willow Rosenthal’s excellent book “The Essential Urban Farmer”, Paul Gautschi “Back to Eden” mulch gardening system) and books on permaculture and Brett Markham’s “Mini Farming – Self Sufficiency on ¼ Acre.
Over these years and ongoing, we proved to ourselves we could grow more food than we would possibly process and store on just ½ an acre. Enough food produced to feed a family of four years round, after just 4 years to get perennials established in climate zone 7B.
The lessons were invaluable and we are glad to share them with our clients who seek to live a fruitful life in a grid down environment.
This sort of Grid Down lifestyle goes by many names and philosophies, Preppers, preparedness, Survivalist, Off Grid living, Natural living, WROL, WTHSHTF, TEOTWAWKI. All of which share some key attributes or allowing the home to continue to function long term, even when the normal infrastructure is not longer operating.
We have served many clients in these types of project goals as the architects and engineers for hardened structures for over 8 years.
Bunkers, Safe Rooms and Shelters.
We have 7 years of experience working on many types of bunker/Shelter/safe room type projects under Hardened Structures – Hardened Shelters. we recommend you see their website to gain an understanding of this scope of services we also provide.
Texas Estate Home pictured below.
Grid Down Tiny Home pictured below.
Grid Down Home Example pictured below.
Grid Down Home Example pictured below.