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Design | Dornbracht

Where there’s water, there’s life

eUnit Kitchen integrates new functions into the kitchen and supports tasks performed by hand

The kitchen is a central living space within the home, it’s a place for communication and coming together. At its heart is its source of water, the point where a full menu of tasks are performed day in, day out. sieger design interpreted this area with a view to it being fully functional, and joined forces with Dornbracht and Meiré und Meiré to bring the electronic product solution eUnit Kitchen to life (2013). It generates added value in terms of convenience and precision.

To what extent can innovative technologies support the processes in the kitchen that require water? With this in mind, the two companies conducted a pilot study in 2011. The findings paved the way for eUnit Kitchen, the process-oriented product solution based on the comprehensive Smart Water concept.

The key control elements, the Smart Tools, include a precisely designed switch that serves as the interface between people and technology, with the integrated display and its self-explanatory icons visualising a spectrum of options, such as water release, dosage, and the excenter lever. External points of light indicate the areas where the module can be operated at the push of a button. The basic functions, in other words the temperature and amount of water, can be controlled using separate dials. A light aura in white, or red and blue, will alert users to the function in question and change in intensity or colour as the dial turns. In contrast to manually operated fittings, eUnit Kitchen is clearly advantageous in terms of the convenience, precision and efficiency it affords. If requested, the precise amount of water needed – be it 100 ml or 1 l – will be delivered. By pressing two or three times, users will be provided with 200 ml, 300 ml, etc. A foot sensor also enables them to activate or deactivate the water supply without having to touch the unit. This additional function is particularly useful when both hands are dirty, or full.

The Smart Tools are horizontally integrated into the basin and can also be individually positioned, completely independent of the eUnit Kitchen. The operating elements are minimalist in design and blend harmoniously into the area surrounding the source of water. Moreover, the eUnit Kitchen is both space-saving and can simply be installed into the base unit via plug and play.

During its collaboration with Dornbracht, sieger design gradually branched out from the bathroom to the kitchen and the source(s) of water found there. This gave rise to an indepth analysis of the living space and the needs of professional and private users alike. Numerous workshops conducted with external kitchen planners and professional chefs formed the basis for defining the key requirements and demands. The findings were continually verified and expanded through new analyses, all in a bid to optimise processes.

Picture Copyright: Dornbracht
Photography: Thomas Popinger
Communication Concept, Creation and Architecture for Dornbracht: Meiré und Meiré

ISH innovations magazine 2013 (PDF)