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The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge: The Ray C. Anderson Foundation’s Ray of Hope Prize

Geschreven op 16-7-2017 - Erik van Erne. Geplaatst in Agenda, Design, Klimaat
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The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge is an annual competition that asks teams of students and professionals to address critical global issues with nature-inspired solutions. The challenge is hosted by the Biomimicry Institute, in partnership with the Ray C. Anderson Foundation.

Biomimicry is an approach to innovation that seeks sustainable solutions to human challenges by emulating nature’s time-tested strategies.

The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge is a team competition. The challenge has two categories: a student-only category (high school and university) and an open category, which any team can enter (including students). Use the Biomimicry Spiral and Toolbox to research and design a solution using biomimicry.

Up to 10 finalist teams will receive a $2,000 award and be invited to participate in the Biomimicry Accelerator program, which begins in October 2017 and lasts for a period of one year. Accelerator participants will receive business training and/or incubation support, mentorship support, access to software tools, legal support, and coaching and technical consultations valued in excess of $12,000.

Student Categorie Winners: First Place: ExtrACTION – California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, CA, US – Second Place: Bioinspired Electric Patch – École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland – Third Place: CO2 Efficient Uptake System (CO2EUS) – National Technical University of Athens, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Technical University of Crete, Greece

Five teams of entrepreneurs from around the world have been chosen to participate in the newest cohort of the world’s only business accelerator program dedicated to bringing nature-inspired solutions to market. The finalists of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator:: Thermosmart – Mexico City, Mexico – Cooltiva – Bogotá, Colombia – B’More BiomiMICAns – Baltimore, Maryland, US – Nucleário – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Refish – Taipei, Taiwan

Over 100 teams entered the 2017 Biomimicry Global Design Challenge, answering the call to apply biomimicry, or nature-inspired design, to develop solutions to reverse or adapt to climate change. In the open category, winning teams have been chosen to receive a cash prize and an invitation to enter the 2017-18 Biomimicry Accelerator. At the culmination of the annual Accelerator program, participants will compete for the Ray C. Anderson Foundation’s $100,000 Ray of Hope Prize.

The 2016-17 Biomimicry Global Design Challenge is mobilizing thousands of students and professionals worldwide to tackle climate-related challenges using biomimicry. The goal: to show how nature-inspired design can provide viable solutions to the current climate crisis.

See also: Interface Sustainability Journey: Climb up Mt. Sustainability by Ray Anderson and Mission Zero 2020 – AskNature: World’s Most Comprehensive and Accessible Online Catalog of Nature’s Solutions – Biomimicry Explained with Drawings and Examples: What Could We Learn from Nature

8 Reacties

  1. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:26 | Permalink

    Finalist Team of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator: Thermosmart – Mexico City, Mexico

    This design mimics the qualities of circulatory systems to create a heating and cooling approach that uses 20% less energy than traditional heating, ventilation, and cooling (HVAC) systems. HVAC systems are incredibly wasteful, with nearly 60% of buildings’ energy consumption allocated to heating and cooling systems. The Thermosmart team looked at how circulatory systems in alligators, elephants, and other species dissipate excess heat, rapidly distribute heat throughout the body, harvest heat from external sources, and utilize internally-generated heat, to create a system that adapts to various conditions. This system uses an automated smart network of low-speed pumps, valves, and sensors that can efficiently manage heating and cooling in medium/high-rise commercial buildings.

  2. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:28 | Permalink

    Finalist Team of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator: Cooltiva – Bogotá, Colombia

    Cooltiva is a system that takes advantage of the wind and the sun to regulate temperatures inside city residences using minimal energy. With over 79% of residential energy usage going towards maintaining comfortable temperatures, Cooltiva incorporates plants into a passive design that is placed in windows, funneling and cooling incoming air. When the wind isn’t blowing hard enough the system turns to an active mode, powered by solar energy, that draws air in and turns itself off when the indoor temperature is optimal. Cooltiva’s design mimics the way leaf-cutter ants’ mounds regulate temperature, the way espeletia plant leaves collect and funnel water to the stem, and the evapotranspiration process of leaves.The goal is to make cities resilient to global warming using renewable and freely available energy.

  3. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:31 | Permalink

    Finalist Team of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator: B’More BiomiMICAns – Baltimore, Maryland, US

    By emulating the mechanisms of blue crab and bay grass and their mutualistic relationship within the ecosystem of Chesapeake Bay, Cool Down B’More is a network that connects low-income communities to designated cool spaces via an affordable transportation system. This idea would increase access to cool spaces for vulnerable populations, connecting them to the right information and transportation, thus reducing the likelihood of heat-related health issues. The design’s three main parts include a 1) Cool Circulator that transports people from hot areas to 2) Cool Stations spread throughout the city, where 3) via a Cool Exchange system, residents and visitors can freely access these stations in exchange for supporting a community volunteer network.

  4. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:33 | Permalink

    Finalist Team of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator: Nucleário – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

    Inspired by winged seeds, bromeliads, and forest leaf litter, Nucleário is a reforestation solution that is designed to be used in remote and hard-to-reach areas of the Atlantic rain forest. Currently, 17 million hectares of the Atlantic rain forest are unproductive and abandoned. Traditional forest restoration approaches in remote areas are logistically complex and expensive, requiring manual work and periodic visits to the reforestation areas. The Nucleário is designed to be deployed from the air into degraded areas, helping seedlings grow without requiring human maintenance. Made of biodegradable materials, it ensures that seedlings survive by providing a barrier from ants, collecting water, offering shade, and protecting against invasive species.

  5. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:35 | Permalink

    Finalist Team of The 2017-2018 Biomimicry Accelerator: Refish – Taipei, Taiwan

    The average fine particulate matter (PM 2.5) level in Taiwan is now two times more than World Health Organization standards, which poses serious health risks to people, especially urban commuters. This team looked to how living organisms like baleen whales and African violet leaves collect micro particles to create a device called Refish that can be attached onto vehicles to collect fine particulate matter. By leveraging the movement of vehicles to generate air flow into the collector module, Refish can capture PM2.5 on the road without requiring electricity and motors to pump air like typical air purifiers. With this low cost design, the team hopes to inspire commuters to shift into more eco-friendly behaviors and bring fresh air back to the road.

  6. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:37 | Permalink

    Student Categorie Winner First Place: ExtrACTION – California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, CA, US

    This team looked to how nature captures carbon dioxide to create a carbon-scrubbing panel system that can be applied to buildings and other existing infrastructure along freeways and main streets. Inspired by how Phragmites australis, also known as the common reed, distributes air by moving it through different sized hollow stems, this design extracts airborne carbon dioxide by drawing it through reed-like entrances and exits and passing it through a carbon scrubber. The carbon scrubber collects and stores carbon, improving air quality in dense urban environments.

  7. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:40 | Permalink

    Student Categorie Winner Second Place: Bioinspired Electric Patch – École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne, Switzerland

    This team was inspired by the structure of a silk moth cocoon to design a patch that generates electricity by absorbing heat. The patch is made of compostable materials and directly connects to and recharges electronic devices like smartphones. In addition to mimicking the fibrous, porous matrix of the silk moth cocoon to generate a current, the team also looked to the fire beetle’s ability to detect heat and the ultra-hydrophobic properties of lady’s mantle plant leaves to make elements of the design heat-sensitive and waterproof. While the power produced by this device is limited, if used at a large scale it has the potential to significantly reduce energy consumption.

  8. Erik van Erne zegt:

    16 juli 2017 om 15:42 | Permalink

    Student Categorie Winner Third Place: CO2 Efficient Uptake System (CO2EUS) – National Technical University of Athens, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Technical University of Crete, Greece

    This team created CO2EUS (CO2 Efficient Uptake System), a device that sequesters excess carbon dioxide (CO2) seawater into calcium carbonate (CaCO3). This design emulates coral calcification and the fluid dynamics that lead to CaCO3 deposition. To protect coastal microorganisms and to prevent bioinfestation within the system, the entrance duct is equipped with a bio-filter that was inspired by the baleen of Mysticetes whales. To avoid waste heat, the team looked to thread-waisted wasps to transfer depolluted water back into the ocean after it has been cooled. By sequestering CO2 from the sea, this design aims to enhance the ocean’s capacity to absorb and process CO2, ultimately contributing to the re-stabilization of the carbon cycle.

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