Innovation That Matters

The tool is designed to save time and money for architects and construction teams | Photo source Environmental Systems Lab at Cornell University

Architectural analysis tool evaluates building designs for sustainability

Architecture & Design

The software, built by researchers from Cornell University’s Environmental Systems Lab, rates carbon emissions, energy use and light produced

Spotted: The construction industry is a major cause of energy emissions, with everything from the manufacturing of materials, to the pollution generated during a build all contributing significantly. A team from Cornell University’s Environmental Systems Lab have now created a tool to embed sustainable practices and materials from the very start of a project — the design phase. The Sustainability Evaluation for Early Design (SEED) Framework provides design options ranked by aspects of sustainability.

Using as few as four fields of data, the Framework creates thousands of simulations with variable levels of carbon emissions, energy performance, daylight available and overall construction costs. The tool is designed to save time and money for architects and construction teams by taking into account as many aspects of sustainable practise as possible before any ground is broken.

The SEED Framework simultaneously runs multiple design simulation programmes, reviews publicly available data sets and includes the architect’s inputs in order to produce an evaluation.

With the cost of making changes mid-build fairly high, having a design pre-evaluated should help increase overall efficiencies across the lifespan of a design project.

It is interesting to see how the creativity inherent in industries such as architecture is finding different means of making building construction more environmentally-friendly. Springwise has spotted a brick school in India built with traditional design elements that provide naturally occurring cooling processes, as well as a home in the Czech Republic that uses hempcrete for long term carbon sequestering.

Written by: Keely Khoury

Takeaway: Architecture & Design Innovations | Property & Construction Innovations



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