How this new gigafactory may popularize residential solar power technology
When production begins, SolarCity, already the leading installer of residential solar panels in the [U.S.] will become a vertically integrated manufacturer and provider...At a time when conventional silicon-based solar panels from China have never been cheaper, investing in a new type of solar technology is a risky undertaking. However, the potential benefits are huge. The new factory...could transform both SolarCity’s business...and the economics of residential solar power.
— MIT Technology Review
The MIT Technology Review profiles the upcoming Buffalo-based SolarCity factory and their ambitious plans that could potentially make solar power technology more widely available to consumers.More news about alternative energy:Cloud-harvesting skyscraper: renderings of proposed new sustainable... View full entry
Get Lectured: MIT, Spring '16
Archinect's Architecture School Lecture Guide for Winter/Spring 2016Archinect's Get Lectured is back in session. Get Lectured is an ongoing series where we feature a school's lecture series—and their snazzy posters—for the current term. Check back frequently to keep track of any upcoming... View full entry
The Conscious Cities Conference is fast approaching! Register now
The inaugural Conscious Cities Conference is a little over one week away. Happening at Arup's London office on March 1, the one-day conference is the UK's first event of its kind and is part of the year-long Health, Wellbeing and Architecture programming from the Museum of... View full entry
Register for the Conscious Cities Conference, featuring keynote Carlo Ratti of MIT's SENSEable City Lab
The Conscious Cities Conference will delve into the evolving relationship between human behavior and the built environment, and the economic impact it creates. Taking place at Arup's London office on March 1, the one-day conference is the UK's first event of its kind and is part of the year-long... View full entry
Stanford Anderson, head of MIT's Department of Architecture from 1991-2004, has died
One of the country’s leading architectural historians, [Professor Stanford] Anderson joined the faculty in 1963 for an extraordinary career at MIT that spanned more than 50 years. But Anderson’s profound contributions as an author and intellectual, his colleagues say, are matched by his influence on MIT and how he formed the department’s shape and stature today.
— MIT News
Related:• Revisiting CASE Conference Hosted by MIT HTC - 5/2/15• Zoom In, Zoom Out: Hashim Sarkis, Dean of MIT's School of Architecture + Planning, on Archinect Sessions One-to-One #5• MIT launches three-year collaboration with London’s Soane Museum View full entry
MIT researchers have created a new material that stores and releases solar energy
According to a team of researchers at MIT, both scenarios may be possible before long, thanks to a new material that can store solar energy during the day and release it later as heat, whenever it’s needed. This transparent polymer film could be applied to many different surfaces, such as window glass or clothing.
[...] the new finding could provide a highly efficient method for storing the sun’s energy through a chemical reaction and releasing it later as heat.
Related stories in the Archinect news:MIT's new "Kinetic Blocks" enhances ability to build using Microsoft KinectMIT presents 3D printer that can print 10 materials simultaneously without breaking the bankZoom In, Zoom Out: Hashim Sarkis, Dean of MIT's School of Architecture + Planning, on... View full entry
It sees you when you're sleeping, it knows when you're awake: WiFi can "see" you through walls
Wi-Fi goes through walls, but it isn’t so great at getting through human bodies. Based in this piece of knowledge, a team at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) has built a detector that can see people through walls using Wi-Fi signals. It can recognize individuals and can even track the movement of their limbs with spooky accuracy.
— Fast Company
If you've been trying to duck the information age by keeping a low online profile, not getting a smartphone, or even living off the grid, you are now officially out of luck: your body itself is a source of information thanks to its relative impenetrability by WiFi signals. Although it's a blow for... View full entry
Get Lectured: MIT, Fall '15
Archinect's Architecture School Lecture Guide for Fall 2015Archinect's Get Lectured is ready for another school year. Get Lectured is an ongoing series where we feature a school's lecture series—and their snazzy posters—for the current term. Check back frequently to keep track of any... View full entry
David Adjaye named as recipient of 2016 McDermott Award at MIT
With a few high-profile projects and a retrospective in Chicago already in tow, David Adjaye was announced by the Council for the Arts at MIT as the 2016 recipient of the Eugene McDermott Award in the Arts. First established by the Council in 1974 as a way to honor rising creative talent, the... View full entry
MIT presents 3D printer that can print 10 materials simultaneously without breaking the bank
As 3D printing advances from its plastic roots, we’re seeing more and more materials passing through its nozzles. Metal, glass, random gunk—each new filament opens the door to new manufacturing applications.
Now researchers have made a printer they claim can use up to ten different materials at once. The “MultiFab,” made by MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL), could offer a relatively low-cost option for the multimaterial 3D printing market.
Click here to read the full paper, MultiFab: A Machine Vision Assisted Platform for Multi-material 3D Printing.Related on Archinect:Amsterdam could get a new 3D-printed bridge built by robotsUC Berkeley team unveils "Bloom" 3D-printed cement structureThe future of 3D printing will... View full entry
MIT's "Placelet" sensors technologize old-fashioned observation methods for placemaking
With a $35,000 grant from the Knight Prototype Fund, [MITs Elizabeth Christoforetti] and her team are working on a project called Placelet, which will track how pedestrians move through a particular space. They’re developing a network of sensors that will track the scale and speed of pedestrians [and vehicles] over long periods of time. The sensors, [currently being tested in downtown Boston], will also track the 'sensory experience' by recording the noise level and air quality of that space.
More on Archinect:The Life of a New Architect: Elizabeth Christoforetti (Featured interview)MIT's MindRider helmet draws mental maps as you bikeMIT's Newest Invention Fits All the Furniture You Need in One Closet-Sized BoxMIT develops self-assembling modular robots View full entry
Revisiting CASE Conference Hosted by MIT HTC - 5/2/15
Participants: CASE members Stanford Anderson, Anthony (Tony) Eardley, Peter Eisenman, Kenneth Frampton, Robert Kliment, Donlyn Lyndon, Michael McKinnell, Henry (Hank) Millon, Jaquelin (Jaque) Robertson, and Thomas (Tim) Vreeland, plus Robert Goodman, K. Michael Hays, Sylvia Lavin, Reinhold Martin... View full entry
Hashim Sarkis named dean of the School of Architecture and Planning
Hashim Sarkis — a prominent scholar of architecture and urbanism, a practicing architect whose works have been built in the United States and the Middle East, and a leading expert on design in the Middle East — has been named the new dean of MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning (SA+P), effective in January.
Get Lectured: MIT, Fall '14
Archinect's Architecture School Lecture Guide for Fall 2014Say hello to another edition of Archinect's Get Lectured! As a refresher, we'll be featuring a school's lecture series—and their snazzy posters—for the current term. If you're not doing so already, be sure to keep track of any upcoming... View full entry
Self-Folding Robot Based on Origami
While still experimental, engineering techniques drawn from origami promise the development of pop-up devices that could assemble themselves from flat, composite materials cheaply and efficiently, the [Harvard and MIT] researchers said. Potential applications range from self-assembling satellites to shape-shifting robots that could be used in search-and-rescue missions.
Researchers at Harvard University and MIT have engineered a self-assembling paper robot inspired by the Japanese paper-folding artform origami. Since the journal Science published the report yesterday, the bots have been widely described as the "world's first Transformer."On that note, paper... View full entry