going to Trinity College, Cambridge as a major scholar, to read Architecture and Engineering, his thesis, in 1964 being a solar house and a floating solar village.
He then went to Cornell to do an Msc in Architectural Structures and Town Planning.
His first Job was as an architect with Arup Associates,
and later with Piano Rogers. He then set up his own
practice, in 1972, Dominic Michaelis Associates, to which
he linked a consultancy:- Solar Energy Developments.
His combined practices carried out a number of solar projects in the UK, ranging from solar individual houses, carrying out both passive and active housing projects In Milton Keynes, and a solar factory office building in
Stockport, opened by Prince Charles, that won a joint RIBA award.
He built a number of solar houses in France, and also in Italy, where he designed and built some low cost passive solar 5-storey housing outside Pisa and Siena. In Rome, he designed the headquarter building for Agip-Jacorossi, cooled and heated by an innovative roof mounted air to water heat pump.
He built an evaporative cooled "pisé" walled house in Marrakech, and was selected by the EU to design 5 health Centres in Mali, built of pisé walls with thin concrete vaults protected by sun breaking tiles. In the same
spirit, for a Polytechnic in Barbados, he used inclined hollow roofs to create natural air conditioning.
He also worked with well-known architects, Oscar Niemeyer for an Oxford college, and the Nervi brothers on a shaded stadium in Riyadh.
Feeling that solar energy had limits in the UK, he looked at wave energy,
and patented an all flexible system, based on a floating upper membrane and a lower weighted and valved membrane linked by hose pumps, developed with Peter Rice (see Wikipedia) of Arup. A sea going prototype proved the viability of the system.
He carried on, his work after 1990 with Solar Energy Limited. He worked with Noor Web, Morocco, to establish a network of village photovoltaic battery recharging centres for the agricultural communities not served by the grid.
He also attempted to introduce low cost solar cooking methods at those centres.
In 2002, a call for Ideas by one of the scientific advisers of the International Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion, OTEC, Association sparked the idea of an "Energy Island", which was published in their summer newsletter.
The idea is to provide a floating or coast based platform able to convert the many different forms of energy available at sea, mainly wind, wave, sea current, and submarine geothermal energies, and above all, OTEC,
which, powered by the difference of temperature of surface tropical waters and of waters 1000 metres below, can yield tens and hundreds of MW levels of electricity with the simultaneous production of desalinated water at the rate of two million litres per day per megawatt generated.
OTEC creates upwelling of low level plankton rich cold waters, which can serve for valuable fish farming.
As it extracts all its energy created from the seas, it effectively cools the seas, rather than warm the seas or rivers or atmosphere, as do other forms of energy generation.
Energy Islands could produce a considerable proportion of world energy and water requirements.
Energy Island Limited has formed a team linked to Southampton University, Dr Luis Vega, a world authority on OTEC, Noble Denton, marine engineering specialists, Halcrow power, Parsons Brinkerhoff, and Dominic's son Alex, who is the company's MD.
Dominic Michaelis's interests have also been in solar ballooning, solar cooking and distillation.
He has recently published an article on bilateral crossed vision in "StereoWorld".
MA (Arch) Cantab
Dip Eng Cantab
Msc Eng Cornell.
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