Nano Micro Macro 2015: Selected Student Projects

Professor: Martin Bechthold (GSD), James Weaver (Wyss Insitute)

Teaching Fellow: Jonathan Grinham

Project Name: Hyxel

Group:Tiffany Cheng, Santiago Serna, Gabriele Librandi, Juan Pablo Ugarte

HYXEL is a 3D projection display system comprised of a voxel field of hydrogels and projector(s). The technology has advantages over more complex volumetric displays which rely on the laminar flow of fog. By embedding ferrous material within the hydrogels a magnetic field can be used to control and activate selected pixels.

Project Name: Thermo-Responsive Fabric

Group: Ji Hyuk Choi, Taehyun Jeon, Namju Lee

This fabric design responds to thermal changes by varying the scale of micro-scale porosities. The system consists of two separate membranes, one dimensionally stable and the other one swelling in response to moisture. As the second membrane swells, cavities within the surface get smaller to respond to outside thermal conditions.
Core Technology: Thermo-responsive Swelling
Material & Process:This experimentation is mainly done using 3d printing of swelling materials. The starting point were basic shapes for measuring the capacity of swelling, leading to more complex structures that maximize transformation by catalysis. A computational simulation model was created based on the experimentally measured data.


Project Name: HydroPanel

Group: Andrew Kim, Hae Young Kim, Hyeji Yang

Considering hydrogel as a new architectural material, HydroPanel studies the actuation of environmentally responsive façade systems. Current technology for kinetic façade systems relies heavily on a mechanical paradigm based on actuator that take up a lot of space and involve intricate mechanical systems to operate. By utilizing the material properties of hydrogel, HydroPanels can operate through changes in humidity level, reducing the need for failure-prone mechanisms.

Project Name: RheoTile

Group: Aziz Barber, Akshay Goyal, Myrna Ayoub

Rheotile is a dynamic building system panel that enables homeostasis using water responsive modules for climatic response. The novel panels manage light, air flow, cooling, and dehumidification. Inspired by the Namib Beetle, the component has a condensation screen head made of bohometized aluminum [hydrophobic] with custom designed surface bumps and water flow channels [hydrophilic]. The water generated is used to actuate a multi-material 3D printed fin where the actuation mechanism is based on triggering swell-able hinges. The product is an easy modular system with no mechanized parts and a quick assembly that is both scalable and low maintenance.

Project Name: Acoustically Tunable Tiles

Group: Palak Gadodia, Alkistis Mavroedi, Roma Patel, Fiorella Vargas.

Mechanical instabilities in periodic porous elastic structures may  lead to the formation of homogeneous patterns, opening avenues for a wide range of applications that are related to the geometry of the system. This study focuses on an elastomeric porous structure comprising of a triangular array of circular holes. The project shows that by controlling the loading direction, multiple pattern transformations can be induced through buckling. These different pattern transformations can be exploited to design materials with highly tunable properties.

Project Name: HydroWall

Group: Peregrine Badger, Bianca Datta, Shreejay Tuladhar

HydroWall is a modular, self-actuated, durable, flood-defense mechanism. It uses a hydrogel base for columns that swells with incoming floods to lift the protective barrier to prevent further flooding. The system can be covered with grass or other landscaping elements to ensure that a property is subtly but attractively protected. It is an automatic, self-deploying, convenient alternative to sandbags and floodgates involving no labor in the case of flooding.