IKEA’s Flat Packed Solar-Powered Housing Shelter

IKEA is renowned for it’s flat pack furniture, but now turning it’s flare for minimalistic design to emergency shelters. The IKEA Foundation worked alongside the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHR) to produce the solar-powered shelter.


UNCHR & IKEA Emergency Shelter

The emergency unit will be deployed to provide a means of temporary housing for victims of natural disasters and refugees. Prior to IKEA’s involvement, UNCHR was only able to provide people with tents or converted mass-shelters, but now, with IKEA’s input, victims will be able to recover in a much more comfortable, private and permanent form of shelter.


UNCHR & IKEA Emergency Shelter

The shelters are also mostly composed of lightweight plastic parts, and will be flat packed for transportation. Once at the site, a unit can be assembled in under four hours. A single shelter comprises of 188-square-feet (twice the size of a regulation refugee tent) and is capable of comfortably accommodating 5 people.


UNCHR & IKEA Emergency Shelter

The solar panels mounted on the roof allow the users to generate their own electricity for lighting. The roof is also designed to reflect up to 70% solar radiation, helping to create a cooler interior during the day, and a warmer one at night.

UNCHR & IKEA Emergency Shelter

The first IKEA/UNCHR emergency shelters are due to be deployed in Ethiopia this month. For more emergency shelters, or similar dwellings, have a look at the Liina Transitional Shelter by Aalto University, or Kristofer Nonn’s Eco Cabanas in Venezuela.

Via Inhabitat

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.

  1. I have a few questions : Apart of the shadowing made by the roof, how do you manage to get a proper ventilation and to get a warm temperature during the night and a cooler temperature during the day ? Do you plan to provide a device like a solar fan, some mosquito-nets ? Can the people collect water from the roof if is rainy ? Can we transport the units with a pick-up or more likely by helicopter ? (What is the weight and size for one shelter unit all included ?) Does it come with other equipments such as foldable beds, cooking place, and freh water-tanks ? Did you design some units for toilets or washrooms ? Thank you for your answers