northeastern university, environmental systems

Visiting Assistant Professor & Teaching Fellow, Northeastern

Student work by Chris Sledziona and Michael Waring

This course, required for students seeking a professionally accredited degree, taught the historical evolution of environmental systems, requirements for human comfort, and how to design both passive and low-energy systems to create an integrated environmental design approach. Weekly lectures  were supported by midterm and final exams as well as a re-iterative semester-long design project geared toward the integration of passive and active systems for a small residential building.  Architecture mediates man and his surrounding environment while providing systems, both active and passive, that regulate human comfort.  From the most basic shelters of early civilization to fully mechanized artificial environments found so often in contemporary architecture, humans have learned to control climate and transform/condition occupied space for the means of comfort and survival.  From a central hearth to the thickening of exterior walls and the mechanized conditioning of indoor air, architectural expression has transformed along with the adaptation of new environmental systems and technologies.   With the transformation of these systems, architects have become responsible for the integration of space and environmental mediation.  This course teaches the evolution of climate control, the impacts of energy use at a global scale, and our responsibility to rectify the damages done by previous generations through the field of sustainable building design and resource management.

The syllabus can be found here: Rockcastle_Fall 2011_Environmental Systems

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