- 90% less water, 90% less energy – and therefore 90% less CO2e emissions in the bathroom: that’s the result achieved by an interdisciplinary team of Hansgrohe innovators and PHOENIX after two years of developing a vision for what is probably the most sustainable bathroom that functions almost without water.
The concept study goes far beyond the usual sustainability triad Reduce – Re-use – Recycle: it’s about Rethink – the radical rethinking of personal hygiene and the need for a mental retreat.
The conception of “Hansgrohe’s Green Vision Beyond Water: Rethinking Bathroom Culture“ was, on the one hand, all about planet-centric design: how can consumption be reduced to conserve increasingly scarce water and energy resources? How can the carbon footprint of a bathroom be reduced to as close to zero as possible over its average 20-year service life?
Regeneration Without Water for All
On the other hand, it was also about the user perspective: individual wellness needs are in clear competition with the growing need to save water. An inner conflict for every individual. One possible solution: Hansgrohe’s vision separates hygiene and wellbeing, enabling unlimited, virtually waterless regeneration. That is why this Green Vision consists of two areas:
BASE – Space for Physical Hygiene
BASE is the new conceptual platform for personal hygiene. The 10-liter shower with pH-neutralized water enables showering with virtually no shampoo or shower gel. The user knows at all times how much water is still available for showering: the darker the light in the overhead shower, the less water is left. The shower water is collected and used for flushing the toilet.
The new visionary wash station features three spray types: a non-heated, misty spray for the majority of wash station procedures (hand/face washing) and one heated, as well as one non-heated, mono spray for “smaller bodily hygiene rituals”. The desired spray type is started by a sensor on the arc. It stops automatically as soon as the hands are no longer under the spray nozzles.
The new, visionary separating toilet with pivoting lid separates feces and urine, thus reducing the number of toilet flushes. It is flushed with the collected shower water. Thanks to its bidet function, the toilet does not require toilet paper – which makes a significant contribution to reducing CO2e emissions. In addition, this saves a total of around 55,000 liters of virtual water, which is used in the production of toilet paper.
SPHERE – Space for Mental Hygiene
The conceptual SPHERE is the area for mental retreat. An armchair with a flexible dome invites you to relax. Through the interplay of light, sounds and warm water vapor infused with essential oils, the dome enables a multi-sensory experience – with minimal consumption of water and energy and thus less CO2e emissions. Opening or closing the dome creates different states that influence the intensity of the experience. This creates a relaxation effect like in a bathtub, but without wasting water and energy.
Green Vision uses materials within a circular economy to create the interior: aluminum extracted from the salt water of the oceans is used instead of chrome-plated brass for everything metallic, such as fixtures. The bathroom furniture is made of wood and recycled materials.
Hansgrohe’s Green Vision Live at ISH 2023
At the recent ISH 2023 the Hansgrohe Group presented its concept study “Hansgrohe’s Green Vision Beyond Water: Rethinking Bathroom Culture” to the public for the first time.
“Together with PHOENIX, we set out to solve the problems of the future with regards to the bathroom space: water shortage, climate crisis, resource scarcity. The result is a modular system based on the idea of circular economy: keeping cycles small and closing them as quickly as possible,” Steffen Erath, Head of Innovation & Sustainability, Hansgrohe Group. “Our concept is open to discussion, further development and ideation of our own, or perhaps even more far-reaching concepts in the industry.”
“Global warming and our use of resources need to be rethought. The sanitary industry will have to develop new solutions that are not only produced more sustainably, but above all, enable a more efficient use of resources in the bathroom. With our Green Vision, we are accompanying Hansgrohe in making the challenges that this rethinking entails, tangible and address them in a targeted manner,” says Matthias Oesterle, Design Director, PHOENIX.
Hansgrohe’s Green Vision during UN Water Conference in New York
Green Vision is a concept study that has the potential to become reality. The technical innovations of the individual modules are already being incorporated into the product development of AXOR and hansgrohe products. Other elements, on the other hand, are still fiction today due to existing legal regulations.
Author: Bryan Groenendaal