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Computer Graphics to Help Streamline Green Building Design

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Cornell's Nathaniel Jones, Brandon Hencey, and Don Greenberg

Cornell researchers developing computer simulation software for sustainable building design include, from left, researcher Nathaniel Jones; Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Brandon Hencey; and Professor of Computer Graphics Don

Credit: Jason Koski / Cornell University

Cornell University researchers are developing simulation software that streamlines the process of making buildings meet sustainability requirements, which will enable architects to employ environment-conscious design principles from the start. The three-dimensional simulation tool lets architects include information such as temperature, the behavior of light, and total energy use at the beginning of the design process, factors that should help cut down on the expense of consultation and the labor of going back to change a building's design, says Cornell professor Don Greenberg.

"You can have the greatest impact in the early stages of the design process," Greenberg says. "You can make the big changes and see where it's going."

Cornell professor Kevin Pratt says the key to sustainable design is tightly coupling a building to its environment, and that the simulation program makes it possible for designers to immediately understand all aspects of the building environment and reduce its carbon footprint.

From Cornell Chronicle
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