BIRD Current Research Projects

Overview

The building blocks of prosthetics come in many materials, shapes, and sizes. To create lightweight yet sturdy prosthetics, we explore 3D printing in plastic, carbon fiber, steel, and titanium. In addition, we investigate different methods of actuation such as miniature 3D printed gearboxes for fingers and twisted coil polymers. While some of these parts may look like something out of Star Wars, these are more than just computer-generated images. These prosthetics are real and they work for real people.  

Nakai Residence

Date: 8/8/16
01-3
Others Involved: DesignBuildBLUFF at the University of Utah: Hank Louis Andrew Foster Craig Harren Structural Engineer: Christopher O’Hara Principal Studio NYL Structural Engineers Student Researchers: James Anderson David Hevesi Zia Hooker Courtney Hughes Cameron Minor Milen Milev Michelle Pollock Josh Young Faculty Advisor: Rick Sommerfeld

in collaboration with DesignBuildBLUFF at the University of Utah

The Nakai residence was constructed for Lorraine Nakai, a Navajo, academic and avid collector.

In the middle of the desert with three existing structures on site the team sited the building to create an outdoor communal courtyard. The home opens to the south to accept the cool breezes in the summer, while the building shields the courtyard from the cold western winds in the winter. In response to the geomorphology of the site, the roof gestures up to the tree on the northeast and the nearby hill to the southwest. The building is clad in recycled spandrel glass. The glass reflects the landscape and nearby historic homes.

A 50-foot long bookcase on the interior of the home showcases the client’s collection of books, acts as the kitchen and sleeping nook while creating a threshold for private spaces behind it. The bookcase terminates at the window seat at the north end of the building. This reading nook is cantilevered under the lone tree on the site. The public zone of the floor plan is a large 11’ wide x 50’ long space beside the bookcase. The fireplace, an integral part of the Navajo culture, is the singular element in this space simply dividing the living room, dining room and kitchen from the art studio and bedroom.

BIRD Past Research Projects

Nakai Residence

Date: 8/8/16
01-3
Others Involved: DesignBuildBLUFF at the University of Utah: Hank Louis Andrew Foster Craig Harren Structural Engineer: Christopher O’Hara Principal Studio NYL Structural Engineers Student Researchers: James Anderson David Hevesi Zia Hooker Courtney Hughes Cameron Minor Milen Milev Michelle Pollock Josh Young Faculty Advisor: Rick Sommerfeld

in collaboration with DesignBuildBLUFF at the University of Utah

The Nakai residence was constructed for Lorraine Nakai, a Navajo, academic and avid collector.

In the middle of the desert with three existing structures on site the team sited the building to create an outdoor communal courtyard. The home opens to the south to accept the cool breezes in the summer, while the building shields the courtyard from the cold western winds in the winter. In response to the geomorphology of the site, the roof gestures up to the tree on the northeast and the nearby hill to the southwest. The building is clad in recycled spandrel glass. The glass reflects the landscape and nearby historic homes.

A 50-foot long bookcase on the interior of the home showcases the client’s collection of books, acts as the kitchen and sleeping nook while creating a threshold for private spaces behind it. The bookcase terminates at the window seat at the north end of the building. This reading nook is cantilevered under the lone tree on the site. The public zone of the floor plan is a large 11’ wide x 50’ long space beside the bookcase. The fireplace, an integral part of the Navajo culture, is the singular element in this space simply dividing the living room, dining room and kitchen from the art studio and bedroom.