Platform, December 2010.

Title: Experimental Research at UTSoA Thermal Lab
Authors: Matt Fajkus, AIA; Ulrich Dangel

An article by Fajkus and Dangel, published in the Platform journal, outlines their perspective on the future of sustainable architecture research, particularly at the UT School of Architecture, including the Thermal Lab. The article begins, "Architecture can be described as the creation of spatial experience through the integrated design of volume, scale, proportion, materiality, the modulation of light, in addition to many other factors which together create our physical environment. The formal and spatial aspects of architecture have traditionally been the primary research focus in architecture schools, while research related to the thermal performance of buildings was conducted by architectural and structural engineers, and rarely connected to the field of architectural exploration. As sustainability has risen to prime architectural significance in the past decade, architects, designers, and planners now see a new venue for research in these fields. The spreading awareness of the urgent need for more sustainable buildings offers a tremendous opportunity to position architecture as a way to create shelter, define space, and modulate the climatic conditions in such a way that the physical performance of a building becomes a driving force for design. The push for sustainable design offers the opportunity and the need to rethink and influence the aesthetic qualities of buildings in exciting and impactful ways."