The house

Floating ark houses Noé is manufactured according to the characteristics of a “Écoquille” : A single dwelling, with its shell wall sandwich in timber frame of a very special kind: arches resembling marine carpentry. You find the link to the website in the Our partners section with all the details of its design both environmentally friendly and forward thinking.


Here are some features :


Ecological and healthy : By the material : Local massive untreated wood, hemp fiber and cork; but also by smaller amount than for a rectangular house (less material, it is both more environmentally friendly and more economical).

Breathable : The house is impervious to water and air but lets moisture thanks to the natural properties of wood and the effects of an active ventilation. It breathes and has no toxicity. The condensation of water vapor on the walls is entirely avoided.

Easy to mount : Without lifting machine, its design makes small parts in its assembly available to any good handyman.

Economic : For the reasons mentioned above: less material, possibility of self-assembly with light tools. But especially for use: low maintenance and operating costs (heating, electricity, maintenance of equipment) kept to a minimum. The simpler and less it costs for maintenance, avoiding repair costs, and regardless of the country in which the vessel is located.


Thermal insulation : Its shape in “turtle shell” limit caloric external trade; its ultra insulating wall (R> 8) and continues between floor-walls-roof removes all thermal bridges. It is a guarantee of energy savings and comfort so important that this type of construction is heated by living in it. It exceeds PassivHaus standards. This is probably the only house for which a minimal caloric extra for the bathroom and large Nordic cold can be supplied by photovoltaic panels: a simple, independent, without expense and no ecological footprint.

Rounded roof : It is not only pretty, but the rounded shape of the housing improves the internal heating convection, easy comfort with reinforced insulation and sound quality, reduces wind resistance and thermal losses due to bad weather, as it promotes rainwater harvesting in a sense of autonomy.



The boat’s hull

penicheMade of steel, more ecological and economical than polyester or aluminum. It is strong, durable and if necessary, flexible to infinity :


The number of occupants : Large family, retired couple, solo sailor.

The use of the boat : Principal or secondary residence, rental for tourism professionals, “Guest Room” as additional income, etc.

Channels where it will sail : From the Canal du Midi to the Breton canals of Burgundy to the Rhine or the Danube to the Black Sea, the hull 38 meters can be widened or lengthened so that the boat s’ adjusts to the needs of the occupants and their itinerary.



The greenhouse


Placed, as the house, on the deck, it takes the form: that of a tunnel. Very roomy, it has the same thermal behavior, offering less wind resistance: it is a bulwark against the cold, which enables crops throughout the year. Furthermore, it limits the evaporation of water and thus less water. Thanks to her, we further optimized the surface of the boat. Even in bad weather, crop care are possible. We recommend culture bins according to the method of “wicking beds” and the recommendations of the “square garden”.


What are the reasons for these cultivation methods ?

The tubs receiving the plantations are made of wood, naturally imputrescible and local essence : larch, black locust (false acacia). Their waterproofing is guaranteed, either by a synthetic sheet or better yet (because more ecological and without toxicity for the cultures), by an internal lining of zinc. Such a structure has the advantage of limiting the weight in height, which promotes the stability of the boat during navigation (limits pitching).

A good height, they allow to cultivate without bending : one gains in efficiency and comfort.

To gain weight and become part of a permaculture approach : we advise to fill them in layers of different natures (see below). This allows you to put less soil, so less water and still gain weight. The different substrates decompose at their own pace by feeding the surface soil to give it a high nutritive power for crops.

the disposition in squares makes it possible to organize its cultures according to its own criteria : Weather, location of the boat (latitude), food tastes and number of occupants, seasons, …

in this small maze of luxuriant to treat the plants with an ideal ergonomics.



wicking bedsThe so-called “wicking-beds” technique uses the principles of permaculture stated above with an optimization of watering : It is a kind of automatic watering, but not requiring energy. The principle consists of a vertical pipe (which can be connected to the rainwater) which descends to the bottom of each tank to branch horizontally.

The branches are pierced on top and embedded in a layer of gravel. Thus the water rises by capillarity in the various layers of the tank, to the roots of the plants. An overflow prevents the “pool” effect at the bottom of the tanks. Plants take only the necessary water, the surplus returns to nature passively, simply by flow, without the least expenditure of energy.

The different layers above the gravel are vegetable and increasingly finer as they rise towards the surface: twigs, pieces of bark, then topsoil on the surface, itself covered with mulching to further decrease the evaporation (already Attenuated by the rampart against the wind that is the greenhouse). A geotextile separates the vegetal layers from the gravel to preserve their ability to collect water by capillarity.


This avoids manual watering and the risk of too much or too little !Thanks to ease of work and amazing precision, cultivating is an inexhaustible and practical source of health (medicinal herbs, fresh vegetables, aromatics) and plenitude (relaxation, ease, harmony, beauty).



In the greenhouse, three batavias of six weeks, five plants of sucrines to come, two feet of chlets always renewed, three Chinese cabbages that succeed spring strawberries, a few flowers and seedlings of radishes. In the interstices, chive and thyme-lemon, basil, parsley and coriander. In palisse, buried in the nasturtiums, feet of melons mixed with mint and cherry tomatoes. Unless you prefer runny zucchini or climbing beans. The whole seems wild, a pretty space loaded with life.

Well sized, the greenhouse will feed a small family with fresh produce, always available and within reach, even on the threshold of the kitchen. Thus managed, it can provide fresh vegetables four people who would take all their meals on board. A wise crop rotation saves your soil, crop care is restricted by planting tight, which increases yield.
In doing so, the greenhouse will produce vegetables all year round. We recommend a greenhouse 4 meters wide by 7 long for 4 people. The modularity of Noé allows it easily, without compromising the comfort of the dwelling at the stern, nor the surface of the workshop in hold at the prow.

Gardening-pleasure :

Two difficulties in the vegetable garden: the fatigue of the work and the obligation to wear an adapted dress. The beginning of lumbago, the muddy boots, everyone knows. Yet an alternative exists: gardening-pleasure above all, time lost, unexpected, without obligation.

Everybody will appreciate of course. To remove the parasites, to clean the plants or to thin the seedlings, are done effortlessly, with your fingertips, in a light soil that can even be returned to the hand.

These precision treatments, protected from slugs and snails, are the guarantee of healthy and developed plants, without treatment or fertilizers, with a yield unknown in the traditional kitchen garden. The diversity of plants naturally protects them from contagion and parasites.



The engine

It can be done according to two principles :


with a conventional thermal engine : our partner possesses proven know-how and a range of robust motors adapted to Noé’s characteristics and your needs. It will be sober and easy to use. The brands and models advised are detailed on the site of our partner in the dedicated section.

The engine will then be supplemented by a small generator to assist, if necessary, the photovoltaic (+/- wind power) power plant that supplies the house.

Or with an electric motor : Preferably powered by solar and / or wind power, but necessarily seconded by a generator (larger than in option 1). Unless you devote a substantial budget to oversize the photovoltaic installation.

This configuration has the advantage of being able to do without fossil energy without having to make major structural changes. The engine and its energy source will be identical, only the power of the production will be increased.

With photovoltaic panels and batteries evolving constantly, the power station will soon cover Noé’s movements.




Noé is a house in its own right, but it is still a boat !

The navigation is in all respects common with that of a classic barge. It is equipped with a classic wheelhouse, harmoniously connected to the dwelling, without compromising its thermal performance.

It has direct access via the bridge, 360 ° visibility for maneuvers, as well as an insulated door giving access directly to the house in front and a small room back which can assume several functions of the choice: souillarde, buanderie, Various storage, …

The wheelhouse contains all the equipment essential to navigation, and again, the choice of fittings is done à la carte.

It also has a table with matching benches, to welcome travelers, who will see the beautiful scenery scroll with the captain, with his approval of course !



To visit the barge in pictures, it is here.