Two Integrated Design Research Lab Projects Win NSF I-Corps Grants

I-Corps logo
Friday, June 26, 2020
The $50,000 grants will support the commercialization of new technology discoveries.

Two new projects being developed through the School of Architecture’s Integrated Design Research Lab have each received 2020 Innovation Corps (I-Corps) grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF). Created in 2011, the I-Corps program is designed to support the commercialization of new technology discoveries in science and engineering.

The teams behind both projects include faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and representatives from private companies. The $50,000 I-Corps grants will allow each team to test proof of concept and commercial viability for their projects.

The award-winning projects are:

A regenerative high-performance curtainwall for net zero energy applications, developed by team members Kyoung Hee Kim, associate professor of architecture and the principal investigator;  Hamideh Hosseiniirani, an MS/PhD dual degree student; undergraduate architecture student Isabella Silva; and Dennis Richter, president of Richter Development and Solterra Partners. They propose to incorporate concentrated micro-photovoltaic cells within double pane glass in a factory-assembled curtainwall unit, which will provide energy efficiency, user satisfaction, and clean energy production to promote net zero architecture practice.

An air-depolluting system for improved indoor air quality, developed by team members Chengde Wu, research associate and lecturer in architecture and the principal investigator; Ketki Prashant Bapat, a graduate architecture student; Dante Gil Rivas, an undergraduate architecture student; and Tomás Jiménez-Eliæson, partner and design principal at Little Diversified Architectural Consulting. The proposed technology consists of a network of light shelf reflectors coated with a thin layer of nanocrystalline titanium dioxide as a photocatalyst. This passive photocatalytic system is expected to effectively remove indoor air pollutants and provide uniform indoor daylighting illumination.

The IDRL also received NSF I-Corps grants last summer for two projects. One of those projects, the development of a microalgae facade, has recently received further support from the NSF for the next phase of development. Learn more here.