U of Michigan team looking to create highly efficient building envelope designs

The system combines the use of sensors, novel construction materials, and utility control software in an effort to create technology capable of reducing a building’s carbon footprint.

May 03, 2012 |

This fall a team of environmental and computer scientists, along with architects and natural resources specialists at the University of Michigan, will launch a research project to design, test, and build a new smart system for building envelopes. The system combines the use of sensors, novel construction materials, and utility control software in an effort to create technology capable of reducing a building’s carbon footprint.

Buildings account for about 72% of American electrical consumption—despite technology that could enable many structures to give back more power to the electrical grid than they draw through features such as solar panels, according to researchers Jerome Lynch and Geoffrey Thun.

Thun said building systems can become more dynamic and responsive to changes in light by adding temperature, light, and humidity sensors that are linked to digital control systems. BD+C

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