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Modern Vivarium

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Develop a new vivarium design that balances aesthetics and care.

Problem Statement

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How can a healthy living environment also be decorative?

Many people spend a lot of money on their
pets.  Most of the time, while the environment
is healthy for the animal, the shelter itself is 
an eyesore and a blight on the owner’s room


Design an enriching, healthy living space
for the animal that also looks elegant in 
the room of the owner. 

Focusing on one species of lizard helps determine the 
specific type of environment that needs to be replicated. 

Crested geckos are arboreal, active, and need lots of 
vertical space for climbing.

A minimum 20-gallon 
is sufficient for 
an adult crested gecko. 

Crested geckos need a moderate humidity level and a temperature 
gradient of 72 F to 80 F during the day and 65 F to 75 F at night. 


Image by Pierre Bamin
Image by Pierre Bamin
Image by George Millson
Image by CLAIN Dominique

Asking gecko owners:
What are important features in a vivarium?



Mesh Framing

Place to put food

Stimulated Ecosystem

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Inspiration is taken from the gecko's natural habitat in New Caledonia and the magnificent cultural centers located there.

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Vivarium Ideation

Hut Ideation

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Technology Inside the Hut

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When the temperature is too cold, the sensor will activate the heating pad. 

Lizard senses heat 
and climbs to the hut
to get warm.

When the temperature 
reaches optimum heat 
it turns off as to not 
overheat the area.

Gecko soaks up enough
heat then leaves the hut 
and roams around the 
rest of the vivarium. 

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CAD Models

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Fusion models were used in order to experiment with proportions. 

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Vent for air flow

Slanted glass roof

Double doors for

easier access

Heating pad underneath hut

Prototype Making


A cardboard model was used to visualize the size and dimensions.

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Uno board was programed to heat to a specific 
temperature and when 
that temperature was 
reached to turn off.



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Thin, strong wood was used in order to keep the vivarium light.  Glass was used for most of the structure to allow light through for the plants inside. Polyurethane was used to treat the wood to make it water resistant.

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5. Isopods and springtails help keep the environment clean

4. Plants are added to give lizards a place to sleep and hide.

3. Substrate allows the environment to stay moist while plants grow.

2. Mesh is used to separate hydroballs from the substrate.

1. Hydroballs are needed

for drainage.

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Final Model

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Comfort in Style
Compact Plant Stand
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