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PORTALE DELLA DIDATTICA

Appropriate technology and Low-Tech Architecture

01RXEPQ

A.A. 2019/20

Course Language

Inglese

Course degree

Master of science-level of the Bologna process in Architettura Costruzione Citta' - Torino

Course structure
Teaching Hours
Lezioni 42
Esercitazioni in aula 18
Teachers
Teacher Status SSD h.Les h.Ex h.Lab h.Tut Years teaching
Bocco Andrea Professore Ordinario ICAR/12 42 18 0 0 5
Teaching assistant
Espandi

Context
SSD CFU Activities Area context
ICAR/12 6 B - Caratterizzanti Discipline tecnologiche per l'architettura e la produzione edilizia
Valutazione CPD 2019/20
2019/20
The course deals with theoretical and applied aspects of architectural technology and construction, and tackles the choices of construction products and methods as well as building systems, the reduction of energy consumption, the environmental impact of the building process, the holistic understanding of architectural design. Being offered at the last year of the master degree in Architecture (Building and City), is not a prerequisite for subsequent courses; while it can provide the tools to deal with possible subsequent activities (master thesis, workshops, post-graduate courses, professional practice) with the necessary awareness. Also for this reason, it proposes a specific subject area which the students may have not yet tackled ľ if not sketchily: that of appropriate technology and low-tech architecture. These topics are of great interest in both research and the actual transformation of the built environment. The state of the art regarding concepts, methodology and "know-how" will be transmitted, also examining outstanding case studies at the international level. The objective is the formation of an ability to deal autonomously and skilfully with an architectural technology problem, in particular with regard to holistic approach, feasibility (constructional and/or procedural), minimisation of the use of resources (materials and energy), substantiation of choices. The students are required to assimilate the proposed contents and to demonstrate the maturation of critical thinking skills through the application of these contents.
The course deals with theoretical and applied aspects of architectural technology and construction, and tackles the choices of construction products and methods as well as building systems, the reduction of energy consumption, the environmental impact of the building process, the holistic understanding of architectural design. Being offered at the last year of the master degree in Architecture (Building and City), is not a prerequisite for subsequent courses; while it can provide the tools to deal with possible subsequent activities (master thesis, workshops, post-graduate courses, professional practice) with the necessary awareness. Also for this reason, it proposes a specific subject area which the students may have not yet tackled ľ if not sketchily: that of appropriate technology and low-tech architecture. These topics are of great interest in both research and the actual transformation of the built environment. The state of the art regarding concepts, methodology and "know-how" will be transmitted, also examining outstanding case studies at the international level. The objective is the formation of an ability to deal autonomously and skilfully with an architectural technology problem, in particular with regard to holistic approach, feasibility (constructional and/or procedural), minimisation of the use of resources (materials and energy), substantiation of choices. The students are required to assimilate the proposed contents and to demonstrate the maturation of critical thinking skills through the application of these contents.
- Ability to critically relate several aspects of complex problems - Ability to consciously relate different operating elements in complex systems - Ability to process a design/building response to meet a specific system of objectives and constraints (eg maximising some environmental performances, minimising embodied energy, making use of local material and energy resources, and minimising their consumption at different stages of the building process) - Ability to precisely verify the feasibility/buildability of a design solution. The acquisition and understanding of the conceptual and operational tools will be verified also by the means of an exercise (see below - "Additional information").
- Ability to critically relate several aspects of complex problems - Ability to consciously relate different operating elements in complex systems - Ability to process a design/building response to meet a specific system of objectives and constraints (eg maximising some environmental performances, minimising embodied energy, making use of local material and energy resources, and minimising their consumption at different stages of the building process) - Ability to precisely verify the feasibility/buildability of a design solution. The acquisition and understanding of the conceptual and operational tools will be verified also by the means of an exercise (see below - "Additional information").
- Comprehension and expression in the language of architectural technology - Understanding and ability to use the technical drawing - Basic knowledge in building technology, building structures, and building physics - Knowledge of the fundamentals of the systems approach - Ability to analyse and interpret the consequences of technological choices on the transformation of the built environment - Ability to methodologically base a project on the analysis of needs and the identification of functional roles and performances for each part of the built environment, the systematic verification of the correspondence between the stated goals and the solutions adopted, and the quality of living.
- Comprehension and expression in the language of architectural technology - Understanding and ability to use the technical drawing - Basic knowledge in building technology, building structures, and building physics - Knowledge of the fundamentals of the systems approach - Ability to analyse and interpret the consequences of technological choices on the transformation of the built environment - Ability to methodologically base a project on the analysis of needs and the identification of functional roles and performances for each part of the built environment, the systematic verification of the correspondence between the stated goals and the solutions adopted, and the quality of living.
The course deals with particular attention to the building envelope, which in recent decades has come back to the center of the investigation in the architectural field. This has also involved the development of research on materials, both new and traditional. The present expectations in terms of comfort and reduction of energy consumption, and broader imperatives of sustainability imply that the envelope takes on a great importance in both design and building strategies in contemporary architecture. The course has a radical approach: it proposes to first of all understand what is already there, to consciously modify it having both the objectives of today and a durable future in mind, and only in the alternative to consider new construction, where and when necessary; it provides tools to develop a skill for reading the built environment (monumental building excepted); it clearly prefers the techniques based on renewable and/or low-energy resources; it transmits basic knowledge for the calculation of embodied energy and carbon, as well as other key indicators for the assessment of the environmental impact of construction. Lectures and case study analyses will cover: - Appropriate technology, low-tech: concepts and examples - Traditional architecture and technology - Natural materials, as well as building products and construction processes based on natural materials - Ecological footprint, embodied energy and 'embodied carbon' in construction products and buildings - Upgrading of the building envelope.
The course deals with particular attention to the building envelope, which in recent decades has come back to the center of the investigation in the architectural field. This has also involved the development of research on materials, both new and traditional. The present expectations in terms of comfort and reduction of energy consumption, and broader imperatives of sustainability imply that the envelope takes on a great importance in both design and building strategies in contemporary architecture. The course has a radical approach: it proposes to first of all understand what is already there, to consciously modify it having both the objectives of today and a durable future in mind, and only in the alternative to consider new construction, where and when necessary; it provides tools to develop a skill for reading the built environment (monumental building excepted); it clearly prefers the techniques based on renewable and/or low-energy resources; it transmits basic knowledge for the calculation of embodied energy and carbon, as well as other key indicators for the assessment of the environmental impact of construction. Lectures and case study analyses will cover: - Appropriate technology, low-tech: concepts and examples - Traditional architecture and technology - Natural materials, as well as building products and construction processes based on natural materials - Ecological footprint, embodied energy and 'embodied carbon' in construction products and buildings - Upgrading of the building envelope.
During the whole course, each student will analyse an outstanding case studies at the international level, covering the following elements: 1. detail the building at an appropriate scale; 2. identify construction products; 3. indicate characteristic values for some significant dimensions (including λ, μ); 4. indicate the method of installation and the sequence of construction phases; 5. calculate the environmental impact of the building materials used (EE, EC, EW calculated according to agreed methodologies and databases).
During the whole course, each student will analyse an outstanding case studies at the international level, covering the following elements: 1. detail the building at an appropriate scale; 2. identify construction products; 3. indicate characteristic values for some significant dimensions (including λ, μ); 4. indicate the method of installation and the sequence of construction phases; 5. calculate the environmental impact of the building materials used (EE, EC, EW calculated according to agreed methodologies and databases).
Most of the course time (approx. 48 out of 60 hrs) will be dedicated to lectures and discussions with the students. The remainder time will be dedicated to supporting the step-by-step development of students' exercises, and to a hands-on workshop. Optional technical visits (and meetings with operators, manufacturers and designers) will be possibly proposed outside of school hours.
Most of the course time (approx. 48 out of 60 hrs) will be dedicated to lectures and discussions with the students. The remainder time will be dedicated to supporting the step-by-step development of students' exercises, and to a hands-on workshop. Optional technical visits (and meetings with operators, manufacturers and designers) will be possibly proposed outside of school hours.
The reference text is: Andrea Bocco Guarneri, Vegetarian Architecture, Berlin : Jovis, 2019. Provisional list of literature: Bj°rn Berge, The ecology of building materials, London : Architectural Press, 2009 (2nd ed.). Godfrey Boyle; Peter Harper (editors), Radical Technology. Food, Shelter, Tools, Materials, Energy, Communication, Autonomy, Community, London : Pantheon Books, 1976. Cindy Harris; Pat Borer, The Whole House Book. Ecological Building Design and Materials, Machynlleth : Centre for Alternative Technology, 2005. Per Krusche et al., Íkologisches Bauen, Wiesbaden : Bauverlag, 1982. Paul Oliver (editor), Encyclopaedia of vernacular architecture of the world, Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1997. Brenda Vale; Robert Vale, The New Autonomous House, London : Thames & Hudson, 2000. Tom Woolley, Natural building. A guide to materials and techniques, Ramsbury : The Crowood Press, 2006. In addition, references will be provided for individual lectures and in support of the studentsĺ work. The presentations delivered by the teacher will be downloadable in PDF format from the teaching portal.
The reference text is: Andrea Bocco Guarneri, Vegetarian Architecture, Berlin : Jovis, 2019. Provisional list of literature: Bj°rn Berge, The ecology of building materials, London : Architectural Press, 2009 (2nd ed.). Godfrey Boyle; Peter Harper (editors), Radical Technology. Food, Shelter, Tools, Materials, Energy, Communication, Autonomy, Community, London : Pantheon Books, 1976. Cindy Harris; Pat Borer, The Whole House Book. Ecological Building Design and Materials, Machynlleth : Centre for Alternative Technology, 2005. Per Krusche et al., Íkologisches Bauen, Wiesbaden : Bauverlag, 1982. Paul Oliver (editor), Encyclopaedia of vernacular architecture of the world, Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 1997. Brenda Vale; Robert Vale, The New Autonomous House, London : Thames & Hudson, 2000. Tom Woolley, Natural building. A guide to materials and techniques, Ramsbury : The Crowood Press, 2006. In addition, references will be provided for individual lectures and in support of the studentsĺ work. The presentations delivered by the teacher will be downloadable in PDF format from the teaching portal.
ModalitÓ di esame: Prova orale obbligatoria; Elaborato grafico individuale; Elaborato scritto individuale;
Exam: Compulsory oral exam; Individual graphic design project; Individual essay;
Gli studenti e le studentesse con disabilitÓ o con Disturbi Specifici di Apprendimento (DSA), oltre alla segnalazione tramite procedura informatizzata, sono invitati a comunicare anche direttamente al/la docente titolare dell'insegnamento, con un preavviso non inferiore ad una settimana dall'avvio della sessione d'esame, gli strumenti compensativi concordati con l'UnitÓ Special Needs, al fine di permettere al/la docente la declinazione pi¨ idonea in riferimento alla specifica tipologia di esame.
Exam: Compulsory oral exam; Individual graphic design project; Individual essay;
Examination mode is oral, with a duration of approximately 20'. The examination will focus on the teaching program, and will consist of a discussion of some of the course topics (rating: 12 points max.) plus of a written and drawn portfolio, consisting in three to five A3 sheets and illustrating a portion of the building analysed (see above, "additional information"). Rating: 18 points max., according to the following criteria: technical correctness of the detail drawings (4 pts) , performance of products chosen (3 pts), buildability of the design solution (3 pts), correctness of environmental impact calculations (4 pts), substantiation of design choices (4 pts).
In addition to the message sent by the online system, students with disabilities or Specific Learning Disorders (SLD) are invited to directly inform the professor in charge of the course about the special arrangements for the exam that have been agreed with the Special Needs Unit. The professor has to be informed at least one week before the beginning of the examination session in order to provide students with the most suitable arrangements for each specific type of exam.
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