Often times, when it comes to finding a simple, efficient solution to a problem, the best place to look is also one of the most overlooked; nature. For example, a drawback to solar panels is that they work best when they are under the sun, but since the sun is not constantly in the same place in the sky, solar panels are not as efficient as they could be. It is apparent how this could become a problem.
Fortunately, it is a problem nature already has a solution for. We all know plants need sunlight, but some actually follow the sun across the sky in an effort to soak up as many rays as possible. Take the bud of the sunflower, for example. In the early morning hours it will be facing east and slowly move throughout the day so that its bud will be facing west and be able to gather up the last beams of light for the day.
According to Fast Company, Casas Em Movimento, a Portugal-based firm looking to specialize in moving houses that mimic the heliotropic nature of some plants, is currently putting together a prototype with five stacked floors that can all rotate separately.
By moving with the sun, the solar panels on the house become so efficient they can produce five times the energy that the house requires. This energy can be used for something like charging an electric car or can be sold back to the grid for profit.
Additionally, the house can change its layout and adapt to the users needs, such as providing a smaller kitchen in the morning for breakfast, and a larger one at night for dinner. An integrated app controls the layout of the house.