slide1 l.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Ecological Building By T A Vijayasanan Term Project for ME 599 Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Ecological Building By T A Vijayasanan Term Project for ME 599 Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos

Loading in 2 Seconds...

play fullscreen
1 / 32

Ecological Building By T A Vijayasanan Term Project for ME 599 Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

  • Uploaded on

Ecological Building By T A Vijayasanan Term Project for ME 599 Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos Contents The term project what is the problem? why is it important? what has been done? what i am going to do? Environmental impacts of building Sustainable built environments

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
Download Presentation

Ecological Building By T A Vijayasanan Term Project for ME 599 Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript

Ecological Building

By T A Vijayasanan

Term Project for ME 599

Submitted to: Prof. Steven Skerlos

  • The term project
    • what is the problem?
    • why is it important?
    • what has been done?
    • what i am going to do?
  • Environmental impacts of building
  • Sustainable built environments
  • Attributes of environmental sustainability
  • The technology of Ecological Building
    • Basic Principles & Measures
    • Examples & Ideas
  • Environmental considerations the primary driver for future architectural design
    • Buildings affect the ecosystem
    • Since the end of WWII, there has been a high demand for new buildings, be it urban, suburban or rural areas
    • Construction of new buildings imposed a significant burden on the environment
  • A continuous and cyclical flow of resources occur in a building
    • The input and output elements for a building include materials, energy, natural resources like water, consumer goods, waste, etc.
    • These input and output elements have diverse environmental implications
the term project
The term project
  • What is the problem?
    • Human habitation is a prime reason for the irreparable environmental degradation we are witness to today
    • Built forms not only exhaust valuable natural resources but also pollute the environment
    • Poorly designed buildings result in a loss of the local eco-system
    • Cities are responsible for the ecological damage on a regional and national scale
    • Lack of knowledge about the impact of design on the environment and a lack of enthusiasm among many architects to adopt sustainable methods
    • A probable reason for the lack of popularity of sustainable design is the ‘high-initial costs’ of design and construction
the term project5
The term project
  • Why is it important?
    • The sheer magnitude of buildings that have being constructed in every part of the world, magnifies the impact architecture has on the environment
    • Also, the rapid urbanization, especially in developing countries
    • The effect of high concentration of built forms in urban settings add up on the environment
    • The issue of environmental degradation due to built form, is critical because, its ill-effects drastically minimized by adhering to strong design principles, common sense & technological innovation
the term project6
The term project
  • What has been done?
    • There is a tremendous body of literature with respect to sustainable architectural design
    • In many universities and research organizations, sustainable design is a primary thrust area
    • There are a few architectural firms that practice architecture using sustainable principles
    • Significantly, government bodies have put legislations in place that are the first steps towards sustainable human habitation
    • These efforts have been ably complemented by an informed media and public
the term project7
The term project
  • What am i going to do?
    • The first step is to understand the impact of built form and human habitation on the environment
    • A review of the relevant literature and research works in the field of sustainable architecture/ eco-design
    • A look into the principles, strategies and techniques adopted by sustainable architectural practices
    • to present relevant material as an educational module
environmental impacts of building9
Environmental impacts of building
  • Shortage of building materials
    • Historically, building materials like wood, brick, adobe were procured locally
    • High construction volumes during the last 30 years have drastically depleted naturally available resources
      • Ex: due to scarcity of structural lumber, wooden architecture has become a rarity
    • Concrete-masonry structures represent the majority of low-rise residential and commercial buildings
    • Steel is used as the primary structural material in high-rise buildings
    • The substitution of natural materials like wood with materials like steel may solve the short term resource shortage problem but should not be considered as the ultimate solution
environmental impacts of building11
Environmental impacts of building
  • Noise, vibration, dust and traffic disruptions
    • Noise, vibrations and dust are major sources of environmental pollution due to construction activity
    • Building types such as industries and theatres must be zoned carefully to prevent adverse impacts on people working/living in the surrounding areas
    • Construction methods and design principles employed must ensure the above sources of pollution are minimized or eliminated completely
environmental impacts of building12
Environmental impacts of building
  • Food wastes
    • In dense urban sprawls, the management of organic food waste is a major problem and poses a challenge to the environment
    • Grinding and disposing of food waste into the sewer increases the content of organic materials so high that it becomes difficult to treat at water treatment plants
    • Releasing untreated/improperly treated sewer has adverse impacts on water bodies in the ecosystem
    • In many countries, it is required by law to separate organic food wastes from other domestic solid wastes
    • Methods, such as composting, to treat organic wastes in ways beneficial to nature must be adopted and improved further
environmental impacts of building13
Environmental impacts of building
  • Water pollution
    • Single-family homes in rural communities, in most parts of the world, are not connected to municipal water treatment systems
    • Sewer generated from these buildings reach creeks, rivers and lakes through surface run-off
    • The same water bodies may be the primary source for fresh-water withdrawal for major cities downstream
    • Currently most people in cities rely on bottled water for drinking as they cannot drink municipal water without domestic treatment
    • The release of untreated sewer from rural communities upstream is a major cause for this low quality water problem

Drinking water business is profitable these days

environmental impacts of building14
Environmental impacts of building
  • Disruption of the natural landscape
    • Buildings disrupt natural landscape
    • Many buildings are designed with complete disregard for its topography and surroundings
    • Although they may not cause physiological harm to people and the environment, they ruin the visual quality of nature
    • Building on sensitive natural areas must be judiciously regulated

F L Wright’s “Falling Water” is a good example of how to build in harmony with Nature

environmental impacts of building15
Environmental impacts of building
  • Disappearing green spaces in urban areas
    • Urbanization is a world-wide phenomenon with over 50% of the world population living in urban areas
    • Sub-urban farmlands and forests are encroached by ever expanding residential and commercial zones
    • Green spaces (parks, gardens) are becoming increasingly scares in urban areas
    • Lack of green space deteriorates the physical, visual and psychological well-being of human residents and immeasurably hurts the local and the regional eco-system

Protecting green areas must be high on our priority list

  • Destruction of ‘green spaces’ creates the ‘heat-island effect’
  • This causes night time temperatures remains uncomfortably high in many cities, causing an increase in electricity consumption for air-conditioning.
sustainable built environments17
Sustainable built environments
  • The flow of materials
    • A building is a part of the global ecosystem
    • There is a continuous flow of resources, natural and manufactured, through the building
    • The flow begins with construction and continues throughout the building’s lifespan to create an environment for sustaining human wellbeing and activities
  • This flow of materials can be divided as ‘upstream’ or the input & the ‘downstream’ or the output
  • The materials going into a building will come at some point of time.
  • This is called the ‘law of material flow conservation’

Eden Project by Architect Nicholas Grimshaw makes use of minimum material


The Building ecosystem




building materials



consumer goods

solar radiation



used materials

wasted heat. CO2, CO, SO2

gray water, sewer

waste, recyclable materials

warm air

polluted air

storm water

sustainable built environments19
Sustainable built environments
  • The flow of materials
    • For any material, its form before entry into a building after exit is different
    • This transformation of material from input to output is caused by many mechanical processes or human interventions
    • These inputs and outputs have diverse environmental impacts

Strategies to reduce impact on the ecosystem:

  • Input reduction methods that ensure minimal flow of non-renewable resources into a building.
  • Output management that include proper waste management like recycle, reuse, etc.

‘Paper house’ by architect Shigeru Ban uses cardboard and recycled paper

sustainable built environments20
Sustainable built environments
  • Building material considerations
    • Extraction, processing, manufacture and transport of building materials are energy intensive processes
    • The energy consumed by building materials in these processes is called ‘embodied energy’
    • The use of alternative building materials having low embodied energy is one way of reducing a building’s environmental impact
    • In order to facilitate construction, temporary roads may need to be built
    • This causes permanent damage to existing vegetation, wildlife & topography

Architect Glen Murcutt’s house for an aborigine family in Australia

Building is lifted off the ground to minimize environmental impact. Sustainable methods such as use of locally available materials employed.

sustainable built environments21
Sustainable built environments
  • Energy considerations
    • The building requires a constant flow of energy
    • Environmental impacts due to energy consumption by buildings occur primarily away from the building site: in the process of generating power and harvesting of energy resources
      • coal-fired electric power plants emit pollutants such as SO2, CO2, CO and NOX into the atmosphere
      • nuclear power plants generate radioactive wastes
      • hydropower plants require a dam and a reservoir, the construction of which result in the discontinuation of the river ecosystem and the loss of habitats for humans, animals and plants

‘House R128’ by Werner Sobek in Stuttgart uses completely recyclable materials, produces no emissions and is self sufficient in terms of energy requirements

sustainable built environments22
Sustainable built environments
  • Water requirements
    • Water is required for the purposes of drinking, cooking, washing, flushing of toilets, etc.
    • Water supplied to the building requires treatment and delivery, which consume energy
    • Waste water or sewer from buildings can be classified as
      • gray water: does not contain high concentration of contaminants
      • black water: contains very high concentration of contaminants
    • Consequently, gray water requires minimal treatment before it can be reused
    • Installation of sanitary fixtures such as ‘low-speed showerheads’, smaller size toilet tanks and high-pressure flushing systems reduces water consumption
    • Innovative landscaping and drip-irrigation systems contribute to water conservation

Landscaping at the Salk Institute at La Jolla, CA by Louis Barragan, employs methods to conserve water and achieves beautiful spaces

sustainable built environments24
Sustainable built environments
  • On-site natural resources
    • Natural energy on-site, such as solar radiation, wind, air, rainwater and ambient heat or cold has implications on the design process
    • These natural resources can be harnessed for optimal performance of the building
    • Incident solar radiation is the most abundant energy source for buildings and provides heat & light
      • Vernacular buildings reveal ingenious architectural solutions for dealing with the sun and other climatic conditions
      • ‘Passive solar architecture’ offers design schemes to harness solar energy using building façades and structures
    • Prevailing wind conditions for cooling and ventilation has tremendous implications on architectural design
    • Rainwater harvesting can be beneficial in arid regions and urban areas

Well Articulated windows in ‘Hawa Mahal’, Jaipur provides cool breeze in a desert area

These typical Kerala (India) houses use rainwater harvesting methods and pitched roof for shading

ecological building26
Ecological Building
  • What can be learnt from history?
  • In the past, human beings lived in harmony with their environment
    • Comfort requirements were different
    • Small population meant ample space, modest requirements, low energy needs and emissions
    • Waste products mostly recyclable & bio-degradable
    • Mobile communities
    • Low threat to the environment

Nomadic life & sparse requirements drove the architecture of the past and made it sustainable

ecological building27
Ecological Building
  • Buildings in cold climates characterized by:
    • Small windows that allowed little light into spaces resulting in minimal heat gains/loss and cooling/heating loads
    • Building mass with high thermal storage capacities
    • Low standards for heating and sanitary systems

These castles in Europe use small fenestrations to minimize heat loss

ecological building28
Ecological Building
  • Buildings in temperate zones characterized by:
    • Tendency to locate living areas underground to utilize coolness of the earth and create ventilation through buoyancy
    • Small window & roof elements minimizing heat transfer
    • Use of narrow courtyards to promote ventilation
    • Fine grained cities that cause mutual shading
    • Use of water as an architectural element
ecological building29
Ecological Building
  • The Industrial Age is characterized by:
    • Migration of ever increasing population from rural to urban areas
    • Extremely poor living conditions for most people
    • Industrialization & rapid advances in technology
    • Increased demands for energy met through use of coal & gas
    • Sharp increase in emissions; indiscriminate dumping of wastes
    • No efforts to protect environment, conserve natural reserves

Alarming number of industries, poor living conditions, deteriorating environment mark the industrial era

ecological building30
Ecological Building

The early & mid 20th century is characterized by:

  • Urbanization, technological development, industrialization, concentration of labor in cities at a frantic pace
  • Concentration of workplaces in small areas
  • Shortening of distances for communication & information
  • Maximized utilization of available spaces
  • An architecture & technology that pays no respect to the environment & energy consumption
  • A false sense of ‘Man has overcome nature’
  • Skyscrapers, fully automated climate control

New York the city of skyscrapers

ecological building31
Ecological Building
  • Late 20th century architecture characterized by:
    • Renewed search for elegant architectural solution with respect to energy use, environment & ventilation
    • Facades designed for natural ventilation
    • Creation of climate buffer zones (halls and atria)
    • Improved heat insulation & sun protection
    • Implementation of energy recovery & waste treatment systems
    • Major energy crisis in 1973
    • Architects, engineers & clients turn to ECOLOGICAL BUILDING DESIGN

Commerzbank headquarters in Germany by Architect Norman Foster uses garden terraces every 12 floors

‘Menara Mesiniaga’ by Ken Yeang in Malaysia is a revolutionary high-rise building design using sustainable principles

chief seattle

All things are connected like the blood that unites us,  We did not weave the web of life.  We are merely a strand in it.  Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. 

-Chief Seattle