Diss. Adviser: Prof. Walter Naegeli
University Karlsruhe (TH)
Institute for Building Planning
Department of Planning and Design


The Concept of the Nature in Traditional Chinese Architectureas Design Methodology for Sustainable Architecture (Feng Shui & Architecture Design - Air Flow and Moisture with buildings)

Feng Shui (wind and water) is the Chinese concept about a resource that influences all the substances on the Earth. This deep understanding of the connection between nature and humanity involves more than one field of sciences. This work is trying to open a door to people who are interested in the connection between building, human beings and nature, an integration planning, which can be utilized in different scales from interior space planning to city planning.

As architectural design works with life sources “Qi/air” that could potentially create beneficial and harmful air flow from the composition of the building elements to people. This research serves as an introduction to help people who do design work to understand that their designs are not only the art of forms; but also they are just as much the work of creating a healthy relationship between nature and civilization.

First of all, the research is trying to build a bridge from the eastern science to the western science, intending to compare Chinese theories behind the Feng Shui with the theories that were established in the western culture: Newton’s laws with the infinite Qi/air, Darwin’s “evolution and natural selection” with the material Qi/air, and Einstein’s “general relativity theory” with Yin and Yang, Aristoteles’ four elements with the five agents to establish the bridge. Additionally, comparing with modern quantum theory to defined the Qi/air as a kinetic energy.

Secondly, the research is summarizing Feng Shui Qi/air flow design principles and developed schemes as a design analysis method, which at the same time serves as an additional design tool for sustainable architecture design.

Furthermore, based on the three quantity theory of Feng Shui, the research develops a mathematical calculations to quantify greenery (Qi/air poles) which people need in a living space, such as in a room, or for a building, or for a city. It is an experiment in putting Feng Shui (wind/water techniques) criteria into a mathematical formula.

Pursuing this research is because the necessity of using this knowledge for architectural and urban planning. Some people decline to accept this knowledge (wind /water technique) because of the cultural gap between the East and the West. Therefore, this work is essential because it connects the Eastern and Western understanding of building and nature. It would be great to let this technology be developed and incorporated into the architecture design world.

“They will find that Eastern mysticism provides a consistent and beautiful philosophical framework which can accommodate our most advanced theories of the physical world”- [The Tao of Physics] Fritijof Capra.