College of Architecture + The Arts

Florida International University
College of Architecture + The Arts

Modesto A. Maidique Campus
Paul L. Cejas School of Architecture Building
11200 SW 8th Street Miami, Florida 33199

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New SET Lab at PCA Opened for Students last Fall 2013

The Structures and Environmental Technologies Laboratory (SET Lab) opened at the Paul L. Cejas School of Architecture building last Fall 2013. This new interdisciplinary laboratory of the College of Architecture + The Arts is an educational and research facility. The Lab offers a platform to facilitate technology learning with a focus on climate responsive and energy-conscious design and construction.  The lab provides students with an opportunity to interact with physical and digital props to gain a better understanding of science and technology concepts. Faculty research at the SET Lab focuses on investigation, testing and design of systems, components, and materials that produce resource efficient built environments.  The ultimate goal of the SET Lab is to create a center of excellence that facilitates university-industry-government partnerships for pursuing collaborative research, education, and leading developments in environmental sustainability within the region, state, and nation.

Students work on a project in the new Structural and Environmental Technologies Lab (SET Lab).
Students work on a project in the new Structural and Environmental Technologies Lab (SET Lab).

The SET Lab was founded by the Department of Architecture’s Professors Shahin Vassigh and Thomas Spiegelhalter with significant support from the CARTA administration.  What was once an open space in the Paul L. Cejas School of Architecture building is now a facility with state-of-the-art educational equipment and technology like the PASCO Truss Set, TecQuipment bending devices, structural analysis software, a statics system, a 50-ton capacity air over hydraulic shop press, and various testing and inspection cameras and sensors for building diagnostics. “We wanted to have a research facility from where we could launch and operate our equipment and tools,” said Spiegelhalter, “and have a venue for experimental workshops and sessions with students and faculty.” Vassigh said, “Although the lab has been fully functional for only a few months, its impact has been already significant in the students’ response and education.”

To learn more about the Structures and Environmental Technologies Laboratory (SET Lab), visit its website by clicking here.

This article was written with the help of Professor Thomas Spiegelhalter and Professor Shahin Vassigh.

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