Biospheric Design
A Division of Global Ecotechnics Corporation

Specialists in the design & engineering of planetary projects, architecture, and biospheric closed systems.


Biospheric Design (BD), a Division of Global Ecotechnics Corporation, has led the development of ecological perspectives in architecture and engineering on acclaimed projects in seven countries and on four continents.  Biospheric Design projects incorporate the latest advances in energy efficient and recycling technologies to achieve a harmony between the architecture and the surrounding environment.  Biospheric Design unifies the approaches of Frank Lloyd Wright, Bruce Goff, and Buckminster Fuller: “Form follows function” to which Biospheric Design adds, and “function follows form.” With this paradigm, Biospheric Design recognizes the vital importance of material selection, and the practical application of synergy - doing more with less.

Biospheric Design Projects - 1995 to Present
To View Some of Biospheric Design's Projects: 1974 to 1994
For Further Information
Who to Contact

Laboratory Biospheres and Earth to Mars Project

Biospheric Design is designing an Earth to Mars Project (ETM): a long-term, comprehensive program to design, construct and operate an Earth-based prototype life support system that will simulate a base for a manned Mission to Mars.  Development of this Mars base will play a major role in (1) determining the feasibility of maintaining humans in a self-sustaining system on Mars, (2) pioneering new technologies for air, water and wastewater recycling, (3) developing the know-how for increasing food production, and (4) furthering studies of Earth’s biogeochemical and ecological processes.  For the present, the ETM project is using the “Laboratory Biosphere,” (a 12’ cylindrical chamber, 1,400 cubic ft), to test scientific and engineering systems for the ETM project.

          Laboratory Biosphere, Santa Fe, New Mexico                 

Click here for information on the Laboratory Biosphere Experiments and for further information on the closed system programs.

Biospheric Design Projects: 1974 to 1994

The Biosphere 2 Project - Oracle, Arizona
Biospheric Design's most famous design project is the Biosphere 2 Project, a magnificent laboratory for the study of global ecology.  This 200,000 m3,1.27 ha, miniature airtight world, is sealed on the bottom by a stainless steel liner and on the top by a steel and glass space frame structure. Inside the laboratory is a 850 sq. m coral reef (of which 682 m2 is the area of water surface), a 450 sq. m mangrove marsh, a 1,900 sq. m Amazonian rainforest, a 1300 sq. m savannah grassland, a 1400 sq. m fog desert, a 2500 sq. m tropical agriculture system with farm and a human habitat with living quarters, kitchen, offices, and recreational spaces.  Heating and cooling water circulated through the biosphere in independent piping systems, and electrical power was supplied to the Biosphere from a natural gas energy center, located outside Biosphere 2, through airtight penetrations.

                            Biosphere 2 Overview                                                                                The habitat of Biosphere 2             

Biosphere 2 was nominated by the USA Discovery Channel in 2003 as the #3 greatest engineering achievement in the 20th Century. Biosphere 2 was also the winner of the 1992 Gold Nugget Award for Best Architectural Design, its energy center received a merit award from Pacific Coast Builders for Best Industrial Project, it was honored as one of Time Magazine’s Top Ten Scientific Projects in 1993, and Biosphere 2 was featured by Columbia University for its contributions to ongoing ecological science. 

                                                     Biosphere 2                                                                                       Test Module

The Test Module, Oracle Arizona
Prior to the construction of Biosphere 2, Biospheric Design designed the one person test chamber (see above) for the facility, called the “Test Module” which first proved the invention of the sustainability of a completely closed system.  

Caravan of Dreams - Fort Worth, Texas
Caravan of Dreams was a unique restoration of two turn-of-the-century buildings in downtown Fort Worth.  The completion of this music venue, off Broadway theater, and artists residence, launched an exciting revival of downtown Fort Worth life

                            Rooftop gardens, grotto bar and desert dome                                                         Jazz Club Bar

 Vajra Hotel - Kathmandu, Nepal
Conceived as “the meeting place of East and West, Vajra Hotel, a fifty room hotel launched in 1980, soon became the place in Kathmandu to meet for Tibetan Rinpoches, Western Mountain climbers, explorers, seekers, Hindu Swamis, Development economists, wildlife conservationists and artists.

                                                 Vajra Hotel                                                                                   Vajra Hotel Courtyard

October Gallery  - London, UK
Renovation of a Victorian building into the October Gallery art gallery, café, theater, meeting rooms, courtyard and artists residences.

                 The October Gallery Courtyard                                                                 The Main Gallery

Conference Center and Adobe Condominiums - Santa Fe, New Mexico
Engineering and architectural projects in Santa Fe include a 30 private home community in downtown Santa Fe, called Project Llanos, and the Center for Innovation, a conference center located in the nearby Cerrillos Hills, that includes a Buckminster Fuller dome and guest accommodations.

Center for Innovation Conference Center, Santa Fe, New Mexico

                  Adobe Condominiums, Downtown Santa Fe                                                   Conference Center Dome

Further information:

Each of these projects are founded upon the principles of biospherics, the science of water, air, geochemical, ecological, ecosystems, and technical closed loop systems -- both natural and artificial. For further information on this field, and for information on the Biosphere 2 project and key Biospheres team members who have contributed greatly to the development of this field, see   For a bibliography of papers on Biosphere 2 and Biospherics,  click here.

Books and Journals:
Journal of Life Support and Biosphere Science publishes results of Biosphere 2 Two-Year Closure Experiment
Journal of Ecological Engineering
Life Under Glass--The Inside Story of Biosphere 2 by Alling, Nelson, and Silverstone

Who to Contact:

A Division of Global Ecotechnics Corporation
Specialists in biospheric design, education and information.

1 Bluebird Court, Santa Fe, NM 87508
Tel. (505) 474-0209
Fax. (505) 424-3336

Information on Biosphere 2 and Biospherics: and
and related books:
e-mail: Head, Biospheric Design Division
Dr. Mark Nelson