The WAF Research Programme has been launched to promote the ideas highlighted in the WAFX Manifesto, marking the first ten years of WAF. The manifesto identified key challenges architects will need to address over the next ten years, comprising; Water; Climate, Energy and Carbon; Ageing and Health; Re-use; Smart City Technology; Power and Justice; Cultural Identity; Ethics and values; Building Technology and Virtual Worlds.
The first of these categories open for entries is water, supported by WAF headline partner GROHE. GROHE are supporting research into tackling unique challenges that water present
The WAF Research Programme will reward first-class thought leadership, innovation and research initiatives.
BIG DATA AND COMPUTATIONAL DESIGN ASSISTS IN RE-ADDRESSING TRADITIONAL PROBLEMS. URBAN RUNOFF FROM IMPERVIOUS SURFACES (ROADS & PAVEMENTS) IS GAINING ATTENTION, GIVEN IMPACTS INCLUDING INCREASED FLOODING FREQUENCY AND DETERIORATION OF WATER QUALITY DUE TO POLLUTANTS PRESENT.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF RESEARCH PROJECT
As existing urban drainage systems were designed for past climate conditions, they might not be suitable for current circumstances or future changes due to the effects of climate change. Rainfall intensities in Denmark are likely to increase by 10%–50% within the next 100 years. In Scotland, longer duration events (5–10 days) show intensity increases up to 30%, and in the UK, small increases in the magnitude of more frequent events are expected (up to +10%).
Current runoff retention devices, such as swales or bioretention basins, mimic nature when reducing runoff intensities. Yet, these devices require substantial installation space.
LoFlow+Bio is a computation platform in conceptual development, which involves:
- Projecting runoff flows on topographical datasets (e.g. LIDAR).
- Analysing the flow regime over sections of pavement – determining regions of high flow rates.
- Flow data informs software that optimises the porosity and permeability of the pavement biomaterial. Developing a matrix that slows zone-specific water flows.
- Additive manufacturing technology prints computed matrix of semi-permeable bio-crete in-situ.
- Seeding sphagnum moss varietals into printed ‘cups’ at base layer of pavement matrix. Moss inhibits bacterial growth, stabilises pH and reduces sediment concentration.
- Improving runoff hydrographs and water quality before water enters drainage system.
Our world is increasingly paved. Annually, nearly $150 billion and 320 million tonnes of raw materials are invested into pavements in the United States alone. The UN forecasts 80-90% of people will be urban dwellers by 2050. LoFlow+Bio could reduce urban runoff, while filtering flows, and lessen heat island effects.
As world-leading landscape architect, Kong Jian Yu implores, we must “make friends with water”.
More information on LoFlow+Bio to come shortly…
Project Management: Tim Leeson
Concept: Álvaro Cosidó López, Mladen Babic, Tim Leeson, Adrien Rigobello
Development: Álvaro Cosidó López, Mladen Babic, Tim Leeson
Renderings: Álvaro Cosidó López, Mladen Babic