A cabin by the lake is pretty appealing, but how about a cabin on the lake? Russia's BIO Architects has developed a prototype floating micro-cabin that's designed to be used in remote locations and withstand extreme temperatures. Named DD16, it also runs off-the-grid with a solar power setup.

The prefabricated dwelling – which can also be installed on terra firma – has a total floorspace of 16 sq m (172 sq ft) inside, while its veranda measures 7 sq m (75 sq ft). It sits on pontoons which allow it to float and can be helicoptered or craned into position.

Access is currently gained by rowing a small boat across a lake near Moscow, where the cabin has been located since last November. Inside, it includes a main living room area, with an adjacent kitchenette and dining table. A bedroom is also nearby, while the bathroom is set to one side. A wood-burning stove helps keep away the chill.

"The frame is made of laminated wood with a milled ports," explains BIO Architects. "The ports helped to decrease the weight and cold bridges and gaps. Polyurethane foam is used as an insulation, the rigidity of which helped to decrease the weight of inner finishing materials. The exterior finishing is made of composite aluminum sheets which allowed [us] to make seamless surface from the top to bottom."

The cabin gets all power from a solar array and water is drawn from the lake (presumably with a pump, though we're not sure if it's filtered too). The toilet is a composting model. We've no hard figures on its insulation performance, though surviving a Russian winter certainly speaks well for its durability.

DD16 is currently being used as a rental unit while it undergoes further testing and seems like it could be a good fit for those looking for a prefabricated cabin in isolated areas – assuming the price is right if and when it reaches production.

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