Brazilian Pavilion at The World Expo transports visitors into nature

January 26, 2022 by  
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The immersive displays at The World Expo Dubai speak to technology, innovation, nature and the environment . Thanks to Cactus, an innovative award-winning design studio, the Brazilian Pavilion stands as an example of these water-cooler topics.  The exhibit aims to transport visitors into scenes of Brazil through the use of larger-than-life visual projections. Encompassing 24,800 square feet of space, the enclosure is covered in a custom-designed, 1002 HT projectable fabric built to withstand the extremes of the Dubai desert. Related: Innovative i-Mesh fabric takes shape at Expo 2020 Dubai The Brazilian Pavilion’s high-tensile strength keeps visitors protected and comfortable, even in the face of sandstorms, windstorms and extreme desert heat. On the other hand, it’s translucent enough to project images inside and outside the enclosure.  The nature of the fabric acts as a projection screen for 60,000 square feet of wall, floor and ceiling to be covered in illustrations of the Brazilian landscape. Guests are immersed into a sensory experience combined of technology and design that celebrates the culture and beauty of Brazil. The digital reproduction of rainforests, cities, canyons, animals , beaches and lush hillsides aims to remove the visitor from the desert and engage them in locations over 7,300 miles away.  The experience requires no transport emissions from travel, wait lines at the airport or pollution from tourists in sensitive areas of Brazil. Instead, it relies on more than 140 projectors to spin up the fully immersive 360 degree environment in a thought-provoking installation that’s both futuristic in design and current in content. The exhibit is open now until the close of The World Expo on March 31, 2022.  “We want the world to see and feel the beauty and intricacies of the country we call home,” explained Marcelo Pontes, head of architecture for Cactus. “The process of achieving seamless UX requires good design at its core. There were many technical roadblocks, including regional weather, sand and heat that made this project more difficult than anything else we have taken on before. Unlike traditional immersive experiences, which only focus on projection mapping inside spaces, we were designing for the entire exterior of the exhibit as well.” + Cactus Photography by Joana Franca and Leonardo Finotti

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Brazilian Pavilion at The World Expo transports visitors into nature

How using 3D-printed foam can cut down concrete waste

January 25, 2022 by  
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The construction industry is highly unsustainable. In fact, 7% of global CO2 emissions result from cement production alone. In an effort to cut down construction-related carbon emissions, researchers in the Digital Building Technologies (DBT) department at ETH Zürich have created FoamWork. The project examines how foam 3D printing (F3DP) can be used in conjunction with concrete casting. The outcome is a less labor-intensive system that enhances material efficiency and lowers carbon emissions. Currently, cast-concrete structural elements use excessive material. Occasionally, engineers use hollow plastic forms to reduce concrete in standard slabs. For more complex systems, casting molds are made from timber or CNC-carved dense plastic foam. These labor-intensive systems overuse concrete or produce excessive waste from off-cuts. Conversely, using F3DP shapes within cast concrete formwork can save up to 70% of concrete, are significantly lighter and well-insulated. Related: New eco-friendly, decomposing construction foam unveiled A slab prototype by the DBT team shows how versatile it is to combine concrete structures and 3D-printed foam . The slab uses ribs derived from isostatic lines, which indicate the directions of compression and tension. Based on the principal stress pattern, the geometry of this slab has 24 cavities for foam inserts of 12 different shapes. For the foam production, ETH Zürich has collaborated with FenX AG, a company that uses mineral waste to produce high-performance building insulation. A robotic arm fabricates the foam components using recycled fly ash, the waste from coal-fired power stations. The foam components are arranged in timber formwork before poured in ultra-high-performance fiber-reinforced concrete (UHPFRC) to cast the structural element. Once the concrete cures, the foam pieces can either be left in for their insulative properties, or the raw material can be recycled and reprinted for other FoamWork projects. This process can be replicated for other standardized or more intricate concrete structural elements. Calculating the principal stress patterns can be used to design and fabricate various material-efficient structural elements. These can range from standardized elements to customized slabs and walls. Since there are no off-cuts created in using FoamWork, the whole fabrication system has the potential to be zero-waste . Alongside minimizing material waste, the lighter masses of the structural elements allow for easy transportation, handling and assembly on construction sites. + Digital Building Technologies, ETH Zürich Photography by Patrick Bedarf

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How using 3D-printed foam can cut down concrete waste

Latest Adidas shoe uses upcycled materials to avoid waste

January 25, 2022 by  
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Adidas has introduced a new hiking and athletic shoe in its TERREX line of apparel. The Nothing Left Behind Free Hiker Gore-Tex shoe is an ankle-supporting athletic shoe in sophisticated colors for the sustainably-minded hiker. It’s the latest in a growing movement for sustainable footwear. The Adidas TERREX Nothing Left Behind Free Hiker Gore-Tex shoes are the newest in the brand’s line of eco-conscious hiking shoes . They are part of the brand’s push for a more sustainable future and an end to plastic waste. The new shoes feature an upcycled upper with a breathable Gore-Tex waterproof membrane and Three Stripes Boost technology with responsive cushioning that provides bounce-back energy return as you walk. Continental-brand rubber outsoles and midsoles work together to provide traction on any surface. Related: Adidas 100% recycled jacket is solving plastic pollution Between the shoe’s fun colors and cool style, you would never guess it’s made of upcycled parts. The color palette is subtle but sporty, including muted red, pink, orange, green and blue details along with the classic gray Adidas stripes on the outside. Meanwhile, the upcycled parts use leftover materials from past product drops. “Through an innovative program that upcycles leftover premium materials within our supply chain, we are able to create and unveil the latest version of the Free Hiker model for the very first time,” said Michael Kadous, Head of North America, Adidas Outdoor, Terrex and Five Ten. “The varying materials used through this method produces a truly unique silhouette for shoe collectors and aficionados worldwide. ‘Nothing Left Behind’ reinforces Adidas’ ethos and commitment to exploring all avenues towards becoming one of the most sustainable performance brands.” Currently, The Nothing Left Behind Free Hiker Gore-Tex shoe is only available to Creators Club members and retails for $225. Buyers seem to be loving the shoes, with one reviewer even praising them for their comfort and ankle support. + Adidas Images via Adidas

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Latest Adidas shoe uses upcycled materials to avoid waste

Passive House Design: Changing the Future of New Home Construction

January 13, 2022 by  
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The total energy consumption of existing buildings was 40% of total U.S. energy consumption in… The post Passive House Design: Changing the Future of New Home Construction appeared first on Earth911.

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Passive House Design: Changing the Future of New Home Construction

7 Ways To Reuse and Upcycle Old Pillows

January 13, 2022 by  
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Did you know that the National Sleep Foundation recommends you replace your pillow every one… The post 7 Ways To Reuse and Upcycle Old Pillows appeared first on Earth911.

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This frying pan gives new life to recycled aluminum

January 12, 2022 by  
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For most people, using cookware is a way of life. Even if you make little more than scrambled eggs, pots and pans are a basic requirement for every kitchen. Inasmuch, the type of pans you use has the power to positively or negatively impact the planet and your health. Many cheaply-made skillets lack a durable design and contribute to the waste stream with their short lifespans. Then there’s the peeling that accompanies some nonstick pans. It is not only unhealthy for you, but also inefficient for a pan that is supposed to be nonstick.  In short: Not all pans are created equal. A higher quality pan can last a lifetime. When a company invests in that quality and makes the pan from recycled materials, it’s a double win. Enter the New Life Frying Pan from Kuhn Rikon, a Swiss company. This nonstick pan is available in three sizes: eight inches, nine and a half inches and 11 inches. Each size is made from 100% recycled aluminum.  Related: Essential old-fashioned tools and practices to make your kitchen more sustainable Whether your New Year’s goal is to reduce waste in your life or to use more eco-friendly products, the New Life Frying Pan brings it home. Of course, green design can mean creating a product that performs for many years, or one that cuts down your carbon footprint through eco-friendly materials. This pan does both.  The Kuhn Rikon New Life Skillet is priced at $128. That’s no small investment. However, achieving high quality comes at a cost, especially in a pan that offers Swiss expertise alongside 100% recycled materials. The aluminum used in the skillet comes from soda cans, bicycles and factory waste. All materials are sourced in Europe, resulting in minimal transport emissions en route to the production facility in Switzerland.  Aluminum is not only highly recyclable, but acts as an efficient conductor of heat. This means the pan heats quickly and maintains heat, saving energy. As a durable material, the aluminum is easy to clean with a quick wipe and rinse, but it’s also dishwasher safe. Dried and caked on foods may need a bit of time to soak before cleaning. With this nonstick pan, you can fry and sauté with less oil. Use it for eggs , steaks, stir fry, fish, potatoes and countless other dishes. The pan is built to handle the heat, even in oven temperatures up to 220°C/464°F. With a flat bottom, it can be used on all stove types, including induction. However, avoid dragging the pan across glass surfaces.  According to the company, each pan produced requires 95% less energy than pans made with virgin materials. The company even ships the pan using recycled paper packaging.  Proper care will extend the life of the pan. Use soap and hot water when cleaning. Although the pan features a long-lasting finish, avoid harsh cleaners or metal scrubbers that could remove the nonstick surface. Instead, stick with nylon. Also use silicone or wooden spatulas and other utensils, rather than metal. Avoid cutting or scraping the nonstick surface with knives, electric blenders or other sharp instruments.  New Life Frying Pan review The company offered to send a sample product for review and subsequently provided an eight inch New Life Frying Pan. The product arrived quickly and was packaged in paper, with no plastic bags, foam or other materials. It arrived in perfect, new condition with no damage.  Knowing the product is made from 100% recycled aluminum materials, I was somehow surprised by its substantial weight. It’s only a fraction as heavy as the cast iron I typically use, but I expected it to be lightweight like many other pans of the same size I’ve used in the past. There’s nothing flimsy about it. This pan demands respect in regards to durable design . Weight is evenly distributed for a comfortable transfer when moving from one place to another. This is especially important when moving it loaded with hot food.  The handle is firmly mounted with no wiggle movement. I love the feel of the handle with a soft and comfortable grip. The company reports they are ergonomically designed. I’m no expert on that, but can report it fits my hands and provides easy mobility . Although the handles are heat resistant, they will get dangerously hot if flames from gas stoves reach up the sides of the pan. Obviously, also use caution when removing the pan from the oven.  I’ve used the pan a few times and it’s great. It still looks brand new . The nonstick finish is thick and baked into the pan rather than just sitting on the surface, waiting to peel away. It works best on a burner of the same size. Predictably, our larger burner allowed excess heat to transfer up the sides. On all burners on my electric stove, the pan heated evenly and retained heat exceptionally well. There was no need to transfer food from the outer edges into the middle portion, since the heat distributed to the edges. It produced an evenly-browned grilled cheese sandwich and a balanced finish for fried eggs.  Overall, this is a high-quality nonstick skillet I expect to last for many years.  + Kuhn Rikon  Images via Kuhn Rikon and Dawn Hammon Editor’s Note: This product review is not sponsored by Kuhn Rikon. All opinions on the products and company are the author’s own.

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This frying pan gives new life to recycled aluminum

University under a hill in India has a green roof

January 12, 2022 by  
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India’s new Prestige University designed by Sanjay Puri Architects features a fully walkable angled green roof that is accessible to staff and students from the ground. The building may look like a Minecraft creation, but it’s a full university sliding seamlessly under the landscape beneath a rooftop composed of squares of green planted turf. How did Sanjay Puri Architects fit an entire university under a hill? 250,000 square feet of floor space was efficiently packed into one building on a 32-acre campus. Prestige University will use this building for administration offices, an auditorium, lecture halls and also include a library and cafeteria. Related: Green roof in Amsterdam leads an economic revenue model The plan was to create an alternative to the common imposing skyline of a university . The designers gradually elevated a building up into what amounts to a small hill on top of the building on the rear south side. Prestige University is only 20 meters tall and the green roof can function as an open auditorium. Traditional Indian architecture inspired the natural lighting for the courtyards and the north side of the building. It helps reduce energy costs and air conditioning in a climate that ranges from 86 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit eight months of the year. Inside, there is a diagonal indoor street that splits the building and opens to interior courtyards that feature natural ventilation. The design team for this unique project included Sanjay Puri, Ruchika Gupta, Suzanna Machado, Omkar Rane and Devendra Duggad. They are all part of the award-winning Sanjay Puri Architects group. Sanjay Puri have won renown from the LEAF Awards London Best Interior Architecture 2021, the World Architecture Festival’s Best Housing Project of the Year 2018 in Amsterdam and the World’s Best Residential Building in the LEAF Awards, London 2017, among a total of 270 national and international awards. + Sanjay Puri Architects Images via Sanjay Puri Architects

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Basketball museum is meant to be viewed from all angles

January 12, 2022 by  
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The Lithuania House of Basketball Museum is a focal point in the town of Kaunas. The museum sits near the medieval Kaunas castle and Santaka park, where the two largest Lithuanian rivers converge. Designed by G. Natkevicius & Partners, the project stands out as a contemporary building in the urban fabric of the old quarter of the city. Because of the museum’s location, the architects had to consider that the building façade would be like a sculpture all around. Meaning: It would be visible from all sides. The museum can even be seen from above, from nearby multi-story buildings, church towers and from the slope of the Aleksotas hill across the Neman River. Related: Gleaming copper-colored steel wraps this solar-powered Dutch sports campus The House of Basketball’s sculptural façade consists of three primary materials. The front elevation allows for views in and out of the museum through alternating thin, vertical sheets of glass and aluminum framing. Other parts of the façade are more opaque and clad with large, diagonal strips of copper sheets. As the copper will patina over time, the oxidation process will cause the metal to transform to a richer, reddish-brown shade, alluding to the red brick masonry buildings in the city. The museum’s horseshoe form creates a courtyard space at the center. The building wraps around the 100-year-old oak tree that serves as the building’s central axis. Its centrality allows it to be visible from inside the building, while its branches stretch over the rooftop and is visible to passersby. All internal elevations of the courtyard consist of the same vertical glass ribbons and dark aluminum framing as the entry façade. In the near future, the museum plans to erect a statue of James Naismith, the Canadian that invented basketball in 1891. The statue will be placed alongside the central oak tree to emphasize Naismith’s legacy and reinforce the axis around which the building is centered. Although the exterior of the building incorporates simple and elegant materiality, the interior pushes this to an extreme and favors ultra- minimalism . It features concrete structural elements and black and white finishes, which serve as a backdrop for the exhibitions and events. + G. Natkevicius & Partners Images by Lukas Mykolaitis and Martynas Plepys

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Basketball museum is meant to be viewed from all angles

Womb building reflects nature in the middle of Milan

January 11, 2022 by  
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UOOU Studio’s recent project provides the cozy architectural atmosphere the project name Womb implies. The office building was developed in conjunction with MAO Architects, Studio Dedalo Architettura, BEONE, Davide Frati for client Reale Group/Reale Immobili. “Womb works like a tree. It is part of its ecosystem and becomes an active and positive element of it,” explained UOOU Studio. Related: Italian thermal spa celebrates 101st anniversary with a sustainable renovation The roots The building is erected from the earth like a tree planting its roots into the ground, growing upwards. Womb draws its nutrients through geothermal sources and an efficient system of rainwater collection. The bark Womb’s structure is strong but breathable. It protects the building, but lets light through thanks to its photovoltaic to photocatalytic lamellas. The canopy Growing on the side of Womb is a proper “waterfall” of vegetation . It connects the city with the environment, generates oxygen, filters light and promotes the well-being of those who work there. Natural inspiration to the building Located in Milan , Italy, Womb sits in an area that connects historic and modern neighborhoods. With this reflection of the past married with the views into the future, the architecture aimed “to dialogue with the different souls of the city.” Obviously nature is a predominant inspiration for the build, so even though it sits in the heart of Milan, long terraces on each of the 18 stories are furnished with green spaces for plants and trees. The triangular-shaped lot presented challenges to the design team, but offered advantages in the angles as well. In the end, they were able to orient two sides of the building to the south and one to the north. This maximized views into the center of the city, while providing natural light into the space.  Banks of glass windows create an open and bright interior space. However, protective slats run vertically around the south sides of the building for temperature control. The photocatalytic materials also filter air for a healthier indoor environment . Architects envisioned Womb as the new “Ecological Landmark” of Milan, with features that are inviting for pedestrians walking by and for those who work or visit the building.  + UOOU Studio Images via UOOU Studio

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Womb building reflects nature in the middle of Milan

Net-zero emissions area will be built on renewable energy

January 11, 2022 by  
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Bjarke Ingels Group’s (BIG) Oslo Science City is part of Oslo’s 2019 Strategy for the Development of the Knowledge Capital, a 1.4 million square meter hub that aims to house 150,000 scientists, entrepreneurs and students. The area will also contribute to the country’s shift to renewable energy. Oslo Science City was developed by not only Bjarke Ingels Group, but A-lab, mobility experts CIVITAS, design community COMTE BUREAU and advisors Dr. Tim Moonen/THE BUSINESS OF CITIES and Leo Grünfeld/MENON ECONOMICS. Related: Nearly 5,000 prefab concrete panels wrap BIG-designed “outdoor urban room” in France In central Oslo, home to 300 start-up companies, 7,500 researchers, 10,000 hospital employees and 30,000 students, a feasibility study has been underway to create an innovation district for Norway . The idea: to support 22% projected growth for Oslo by 2045, or about 1.6 million inhabitants. Oslo Science City plans to create an innovation district that aims to be a net-zero emissions area built on renewable energy and circular economic principles. “Our design for Oslo Science City seeks to strengthen and develop the existing communities and neighborhoods while expanding the area’s diversity through new spaces to live, work and share knowledge,” said Bjarke Ingels, founder and creative director of BIG. “To manifest the identity of Oslo Science City, the elements of the master plan are tied together in a continuous loop of welcoming multifunctional buildings and spaces that open out towards the streets and create an engaging urban environment.” Oslo Science City is designed to house Norway’s largest life sciences building for research and teaching, which will be completed by 2026. It will also have an expansion of the existing Oslo Cancer Cluster. Another research center called Climate, Energy and Environment will create a campus and center for research and innovation between the country’s leading research institute SINTEF , The Norwegian Geotechnical Institute, the Norwegian Institute for Energy Technology, the Norwegian Institute for Water Research and the Norwegian Institute for Air Research, among others.  Digitalization and Computational Science will be housed here too, which aims to foster collaborations between the Department of Informatics at the University of Oslo . In addition, there will be collaboration with The Norwegian Computing Center and Norwegian Artificial Intelligence Research Consortium, which explores artificial intelligence, machine learning and robotics. There will also be a Department of  Democracy and Inclusion, where new knowledge will be developed. It will be about the threats and solutions to strengthen democracy, the role of democratic institutions in a time of technological disruption, increased economic inequality and anti-democratic forces.  Oslo Science City aims to excel in planning processes as well. There will be efficient land use and densification kept in mind, along with increasing the amount of biomass in the area. Oslo Science City will include not only eco-friendly buildings, but a green corridor through the hub, extensive tree planting and emissions-free mobility solutions. + Bjarke Ingels Group Images via PLAYTIME and Bjarke Ingels Group

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Net-zero emissions area will be built on renewable energy

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