Engineering living scaffolds for building materials

Phys.org | March 14, 2019

When the inside of a mollusk shell shimmers in the sunlight, the iridescence isn't produced by colored pigments but by tiny physical structures self-assembled from living cells and inorganic components. Now, a team of researchers at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has developed a platform to mimic this self-assembly ability by engineering living cells to act as a starting point for building composite materials.
Engineered living materials (ELMs) use living cells as materials scaffolds and are a new class of material that might open the door to self-healing materials and other advanced applications in bioelectronics, biosensing, and smart materials. Such materials could mimic emergent properties found in nature-where a complex system has properties that the individual components do not have such as iridescence or strength.

Spotlight

Five years ago, if someone mentioned the word bots to you, your mind would probably start to think back to any of the famous pop culture robots from the 80s and 90s. Companies everywhere are implementing them into their marketing. They’ve become so popular, 80% of businesses claim they already use or plan to use chatbots by 2020.

Spotlight

Five years ago, if someone mentioned the word bots to you, your mind would probably start to think back to any of the famous pop culture robots from the 80s and 90s. Companies everywhere are implementing them into their marketing. They’ve become so popular, 80% of businesses claim they already use or plan to use chatbots by 2020.

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PRODUCTS

AIA and Anguleris partner to enhance building product research and selection

AIA & Anguleris | September 23, 2021

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Anguleris are partnering to elevate and enhance the relationship between architects and building product manufacturers (BPM). Aligning with the AIA's commitment to sustainability in the built environment and the use of healthy building materials in those buildings, Anguleris creates technologies that streamline building product research and selection for architects. The Anguleris portfolio includes globally-recognized platforms canvassing BIM, specifications, and samples, all of which enable manufacturers to advance their development of an informed product selection strategy. "As the architecture profession becomes increasingly committed to sustainability and health as key drivers of design and construction, materials and material science are becoming more critical to effective outcomes," said AIA EVP/Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy, FAIA. "The depth, quality, and delivery of information assets to help inform architects is not consistent across the building products industry. Our work with Anguleris will change that." Building products are evolving at a rate that has not been previously seen,Our team is honored to help AIA enhance the relationship between architects and building product manufacturers in the pursuit of an exceptional built environment. Anguleris CEO Benjamin Glunz, Assoc. AIA The partnership with Anguleris, the creators of BIMsmith and Swatchbox, will support BPMs in the effort to achieve the goals of the soon to launch AIA Informed Product Selection Challenge. The challenge is aiming to help BPMs advance the development and delivery of data, information, and knowledge about their products. More information about the Informed Product Selection Challenge will be available in the fourth quarter of 2021. About Anguleris Anguleris is a global leader in construction technology. Founded, owned, and operated by architects, Anguleris helps building product manufacturers and building professionals work together seamlessly. From its flagship product research platform BIMsmith to its leading material sample platform Swatchbox, Anguleris facilitates the meaningful exchange of value between manufacturers and the AEC community. Learn more at www.anguleris.com. About AIA Founded in 1857, AIA consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through more than 200 international, state and local chapters, AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation, and world. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards.

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CONSTRUCTION

The Museum of Science & History (MOSH) Selects Balfour Beatty and Stellar as Joint Venture Construction Manager for MOSH Genesis Project

Balfour Beatty | January 31, 2022

The Museum of Science & History (MOSH) announced the selection of Balfour Beatty and Stellar as a joint venture to lead construction management for the MOSH Genesis project.Balfour Beatty and Stellar will oversee all vertical construction for the $85 million project, which will bring a new Museum to the Shipyards East area on the Northbank of Downtown Jacksonville. Plans for the new Museum comprise 130,000 square feet for exhibitions, programs and events along with a new-and-improved space for the planetarium. Balfour Beatty has successfully delivered several museum projects, including the Perot Museum of Nature & Science and the Perot Family Turtle Creek Legacy Hall Museum in Dallas, Texas; the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Triangle, Virginia; and the North Carolina Museum of Art expansion in Raleigh, North Carolina. Additionally, the firm has experience leading complex new construction projects in Northeast Florida, such as the Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center; the terminal expansion project at Jacksonville International Airport; and Jacksonville University’s new basketball performance center. Stellar, a Jacksonville-headquartered design-build company, has more than 35 years of experience in design, engineering, construction and mechanical services. The firm brings local and national recreational facilities experience to the joint venture; past projects include the Hale Koa Ilima Pool Renovation, Shades of Green at Disney World Renovation, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens and bestbet Jacksonville gaming center. “Our Board of Trustees and Genesis Oversight Committee were extremely impressed by Balfour Beatty and Stellar’s depth of experience in Northeast Florida. After reviewing proposals from numerous teams through our competitive process, we were particularly interested in the complementary nature of Balfour Beatty’s national experience and Stellar’s local roots,Their combined approach demonstrated a holistic understanding of our visitor experience plan, both within our building and across the broader Sports and Entertainment District.” -Bruce Fafard, President and CEO of MOSH The DIA’s board provided unanimous approval for MOSH to proceed with the land disposition process for a four-acre parcel at the Shipyards East during its January 19 meeting. The Museum’s new building will be constructed on a 2.5-acre section of that property. Estimating and budgeting will begin in February 2022, with construction commencing in 2023 following all necessary site approvals through the DIA and City Council. “Jacksonville is a dynamic city, and MOSH is an established leader within its cultural community, We are honored to have the opportunity to partner with MOSH on this iconic development and have the unique opportunity to shape the future of downtown.” -Dave Campbell, Balfour Beatty project executive. MOSH is a community pillar that has inspired scores of designers, engineers and innovators within our region,” said Richard Lovelace, Senior Vice President, Commercial at Stellar. “Through our participation in this joint venture with Balfour Beatty, we hope to create a building where the next generation of creative thinkers can find inspiration to become pioneers and leaders. MOSH has operated in its current location on the Southbank of Downtown Jacksonville since 1969. The Museum’s operations have outgrown the 77,000-square-foot facility; building a new Museum will significantly expand the organization’s capacity to serve more students and visitors. Early projections estimate that by building a new facility at the Jacksonville Shipyards, MOSH will be able to serve 58,000 students (a 50% increase over pre-pandemic numbers) and 469,000 visitors (a 168% increase) each year. For more information about the MOSH Genesis vision, or to support the campaign through a contribution, visit moshgenesis.com or email MOSHGenesis@themosh.org. About MOSH: The Museum of Science & History (MOSH) is located at 1025 Museum Circle near Friendship Park. MOSH, first chartered in 1941, inspires the joy of lifelong learning by bringing to life the sciences and regional history. Admission is $15.95 for adults; $12.95 for youth, students, active and retired military and seniors. There is no admission fee for children two and under or Museum Members. Learn more at themosh.org. Museum funding is provided in part by the City of Jacksonville and the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, Inc.; the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Arts and Culture and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture; and the National Endowment for the Arts; Historic Museums Grants-in-Aid Program assistance provided by the Bureau of Historical Museums, Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of State, Secretary of State. About Balfour Beatty: Balfour Beatty is an industry-leading provider of general contracting, at-risk construction management and design-build services for public and private sector clients across the United States. Performing heavy civil and vertical construction, the company is part of Balfour Beatty plc (LSE: BBY), a leading international infrastructure group that provides innovative and efficient infrastructure that underpins our daily lives, supports communities and enables economic growth. Balfour Beatty is ranked among the top domestic building contractors in the United States by Engineering News-Record. To learn more, visit www.balfourbeattyus.com. About Stellar: Stellar is a fully integrated design, engineering, construction and mechanical services firm that provides the industry’s most comprehensive range of self-performed services, including planning, design, pre-construction, construction, refrigeration, mechanical and utility, building envelope, and total operations and maintenance services. More than 800 Stellar employees worldwide create award-winning food processing plants, refrigerated warehouses, distribution centers, commercial buildings and military facilities. In addition to its Jacksonville, Florida, headquarters, Stellar operates nearly 50 support locations and offices throughout the United States, China and in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The company also serves Central and South America, Europe and India. For more information, visit stellar.net.

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Cloud-based platforms provide clear tracking of workers onsite to help during pandemic

Constructconnect | September 08, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has taken a bite out of the construction industry, hampering and, in some cases, halting projects, but Quebec-based construction company EBC is proving a Cloud-based digital platform can help minimize the impact on day-to-day operations. “We’ve been ahead of the pack and COVID-19 has had less impact on our business due to our early adoption of Cloud technologies such as BIM 360 and its numerous versatile tools and modules,” Philippe De Guise, manager with BIM Corporate Services at EBC, told a webinar on how to improve construction workflows through digitized platforms hosted by Buildings Canada. As an example, De Guise said health check stations on one of its construction sites were saved in BIM 360, helping keep track of everyone onsite. “Down the line if we are audited, we have a clear track of whoever was on the jobsite and when they were there.” Prior to the pandemic, EBC set up a virtual design environment, allowing management and employees to use Cloud-based technology to improve communication and production.

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