Designs on Industrial Technology
by Larry R. Barrow, D.Des, AIA, NCARB
Various architects today are investigating the digital tools of industrial design, engineering, and manufacturing in search of ways to improve processes in the fragmented construction industry. For many reasons — the structure of the industry, the physical size and complexity of buildings, the typically low design repetition factor, and a general cultural conservatism — the design process and products of architecture lag behind those of the manufacturing industries in several ways.
Although the use of 2D drafting software is now pervasive in architectural practice, the building design professions are only just beginning to use 3D object modeling and more advanced digital representation techniques.
Advances in industrial simulation technologies hold promise for architecture in both process and product. The Digital Research and Imaging Lab at Mississippi State University is researching emerging visualization and simulation technologies in peripheral industries to investigate their potential for technology transfer to architecture.
The Engineering Research Center (ERC) at Mississippi State University is one of seven super-computing centers in the United States. The ERC is a major provider of high-technology research services for the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). >>>
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VAIL is used to make large sets of meteorological or oceanographic data comprehensible.
Photo: Visualization, Analysis, and Imaging Lab/ Mississippi State University
Research conducted at the ERC/ SimCenter for the Navy may eventually lead to improved CFD analysis capabilities for architects.
Image: Computational Simulation and Design Center/ Mississippi State University
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