Yale School of Architecture Announces First Grants for Research in Advanced Sustainability

Yale School of Architecture has selected five pioneering projects to receive the inaugural grants from the Hines Research Fund for Advanced Sustainability in Architecture.

The $5 million endowment fund was set up in 2008 by Gerald D. Hines, founder and chairman of Hines, an international real estate firm with landmark projects worldwide.

Hines was the first Edward P. Bass Distinguished Visiting Architecture Fellow at the Yale School of Architecture. The school is a leader in the effort to fully integrate sustainable design and technology into the architectural curriculum.

The Hines Research Fund seeks to propel architectural research to a new level in which fundamental questions are grounded by the urgent need for solutions. While typical grants for architectural research focus support on finite individual projects, the Yale School of Architecture has taken a longer-term, broader approach in selecting projects for the Hines Fund grants — favoring innovative proposals that both draw on a range of academic disciplines and professional expertise and are also able to engender further research and development.

Many of the proposals combine the resources of a variety of professionals–scholars, researchers, architects, engineers and manufacturers among them—and all of the proposals are committed to expanding academic research and educational opportunities for students. Future grant cycles will build on these themes and collaborations while extending links to other university departments, as well as to large architecture firms.

“The winning proposals reflect the vision and commitment of Mr. Hines and affirm Yale’s leadership role as a staging ground for new ideas and innovation,” said Yale School of Architecture Dean Robert A.M. Stern.

“We are proud to be part of the pioneering and collaborative effort to develop new materials and novel techniques for building a sustainable future,” Stern added.

The winning proposals fall into three thematic areas:

  • Constructional methods and materials, particularly in terms of reducing both embodied energy and the energy consumed by building systems
  • Development of climate responsive building types
  • Analysis/optimization of energy behaviors in buildings

The titles of the Hines Fund grant recipients, their principal investigators (P.I) and descriptions follow:

High Density, High Performance Mid-Rise Building Assembly Systems
Keith Krumwiede (P.I.) with Alan Organschi, Thomas Auer, Patrick Bellew, and Neil Thomas
The researchers will develop mass producible prototypes of lightweight, high-strength building façade and envelope systems that will be optimized for the four major climates. Besides reducing operational energy and embodied energy, the building systems are intended to enable low-cost densification of mid-rise buildings for a more sustainable urban footprint.

Sustainable Structures for Tall Buildings
Kyoung Sun Moon (P.I.)
This research investigates resource reduction for tall buildings through the development of stiffness-based design methods that optimize height to weight. The intention is to significantly reduce materials in the building structure by incorporating the latest advances in materials science with state-of-the-art computational analysis.

Thermal Sinking of Building Components
Michelle Addington (P.I.)
The researcher will apply her earlier theoretical work on heat transfer coefficients toward an analysis of large thermal components in buildings. She will explore whether reconsidering the relationship between thermal sinks and sources makes radically reducing the heating and cooling loads of building systems an achievable goal.

High-Performance Enclosure System
Hilary Sample (P.I.) with Michael Maharam and Paul Kassabian
The researchers will develop a new type of enclosure system made from high-performance textiles fabricated with natural and recycled materials. The enclosure system is intended to reduce the negative impact conventional envelope systems exert on indoor air quality while providing superior thermal and light control with a lightweight, less resource-intensive assembly.

Course Redesign: Materials for Architects
Susan Farricielli
In this academic initiative grant, the instructor will update and restructure the traditional course in methods and materials for architects by introducing the latest advancements in sustainable materials and developing hands-on learning exercises with these materials.

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Media Contact

Dorie Baker: dorie.baker@yale.edu, 203-432-1345