After looking at the more common construction materials for campers such as close-cell foam and fiberglass, Thomas used his expertise in aluminum and saw that there were weight and strength advantages similar to those incorporated in aircraft that would be superior for an expedition camper. The outer skin was constructed with 1/8-inch-thick flat aluminum plates, the same as used in shipbuilding. For maximum insulation in extreme hot and cold, he used special 3.2-inch-thick material and covered the inside with a bird's-eye maple veneer for a warm and homelike feeling, as opposed to the surgical white look used by other German manufacturers.
Since this sophisticated vehicle will encounter much more than paved roads and high-speed autobahns, there were other aspects to consider. Dual-pane windows incorporate a fold-down flush-mounted security shutter with peepholes that still allow outside observation and ventilation. The front section of the roof can be opened with servomotors for a better view of the star-studded sky. The bed itself can also be raised with four servomotors all the way to the roofline for a cool night's sleep in the middle of the Sahara. Thomas calls it the "thousand-star hotel."
Without power, nothing works. Plugs for 230-volt AC and 12-volt DC are located throughout the camper. The base power comes from a bank of Sunshine Dry Fit Gel batteries. The battery bank is charged on the road by dual alternators and four SunWare 12V/545W solar panels, which can be walked on. When in camp, a 12V/350W wind generator can supplement the solar panels. A Freedom Heart Interface (Xantrex) inverter/converter supplies 220-volt AC and quickly recharges the batteries when they are plugged into shore power, which is infrequently. When needed, a SDMO Aliize 3000 generator slides out from an insulated side compartment.
Radiant hot water tubing in the floor structure provides heating. An Eberspaecher (Espar) D5 Hydronic diesel-powered heater supplies hot water for kitchen, shower, and floor heating. A 40-gallon solar water heater on the roof is nice for extended camps. A backup Primus diesel heater is on standby. Drawing from the experience of other expedition travelers and blue water sailors, there is little question that a good propane stove is the only way to prepare meals, especially since propane works at all altitudes and is available worldwide. A custom-built 140-liter refrigerator uses a remote compressor.