About the SodaBIB Project...

What is the SodaBIB Project?

The SodaBIB project is an effort to finalize the design of the special shipping pallet, tetst the design with moch-ups, and shepherd the final design to market.

The project is currently entering a phase that will build a full scale mock-up of pallets and roof. The mock-up design and construction will be organized by three NYIT full-time professors, two of whom are licensed to practice architecture in New York State. The project aims to engage a New York State engineer to finalize the technical aspects of mass-producing the design.

The mock up is designed to test life cycle and performance of both components of the proposed product. The first phase will test the pallet used as a shipping pallet. The second phase will test the pallets’ disassembly, and re-use as a roof membrane with water bottles.

The SodaBIB project is phased in three parts. Current fundraising efforts are aimed at realizing [PHASE 1] and [PHASE 2], more of which is below.

PHASE 1 - Full Scale Shipping Pallets

In the project's first phase, we aim to create a five prototype SodaBIB shipping pallets. Using laser cutters on the NYIT campus, students will template, cut, and assemble five SodaBIB shipping pallets. These pallets will be tested in real-world scenarios, and used with forklifts to lift hundreds of pounds of water bottles.

Laser-cutting and assembling a SodaBIB Pallet

PHASE 2 - Turn the Pallets into a Roof

Next, we'll create a full-scale SodaBIB roof, made completely of pallets and recycled bottles. The roofing purlins will be harvested from the pallets in [PHASE 1], and students will assemble the roof by duplicating existing conditions in developing countries or relief sites.

Building a Diagrid Structure

The roof is designed to test many variables. Foremost, it will be a form of barrel vault so that we can test how water bottles perform at a variety of angles. Further, we will arrange them at varying overlaps to test for minimum required overlap. Just as importantly, we will test the roof for solar performance, record wind performance and light permeation through various colored bottles arranged in tiled patterns.

For maximum exposure to the public, this roof prototype will be designed to be modular: it will move to other exhibition spaces in the region as they become available. Please email us if you can recommend a plaze, site, or other place to display this roof!

PHASE 3 - Finalize the Design For Market

To finalize designs with beverage suppliers, pallet companies, pallet manufacturing companies to make the SodaBIB pallet a reality. This requires technical-level collaboration with engineers, materials specialists, and industrial designers on the creation of a steel mold for mass production. [BIB mold will be milled from hardened steel, BIBs pressed from High Density Polyethylene]

PHASE 0 - Wait, there was Work Done before Phase 1?

The SodaBIB Project has grown from lots of research at NYIT's School of Architecture and Design.

What are the SodaBIB Project's Goals

The goals for the BIB project can be subdivided by step:

[Goal 1] Create a ten prototype SodaBIB shipping pallets. These pallets will be tested in real-world scenarios, and used to lift hundreds of pounds of water bottles. [These SodaBIB pallets will be laser-cut from plastic sheets, and glued together by NYIT students.]

[Goal 2] Create a full-scale SodaBIB roof, made completely of recycled bottles. The roofing purlins will be harvested from the pallets in Goal 1, and students will assemble the roof by duplicating existing conditions in developing countries or relief sites. [This roof will be made from undetermined structure, and combined with bottles distributed by the American Red Cross.]

[Goal 3] Create a steel mold to mass produce tens of thousands of SodaBIB Pallets for use in several projects in developing countries. [BIB mold will be milled from hardened steel, BIBs pressed from High Density Polyethylene]

About the SodaBIB Project Implementation

The goals above will be realized in a class setting at the NYIT School of Architecture and Design, and by a volunteer organization that has already organized to build the roof.

Goal 1 will be achieved via a class [ARCH 291 - Parametric Performance II], taught by project collaborators and held Fall 2012. The large prototype and individual models from this class will be displayed to meet Goal 2 in the Winter or Spring of 2013.

About the Investigators

JASON VAN NEST, RA

Jason is an Assistant Professor at NYIT and a Lecturer at Yale. He is a Registered Architect in New York State, has practiced Architecture along the Eastern Seaboard for over ten years. He is a co-founder Anomalus Design Studio, and Mobilis Modeling. Jason is a 2008 MacDowell Fellow and subsequently was elected to a three-year term on the MacDowell Fellow's Committee. He also has been working on a 2005 Boston Society of Architects grant to model urban growth with Genetic Algorithms. (Jason earned a Bachelor of Architecture from Georgia Tech and a Masters of Architecture at Yale.)

FARZANA GANDHI, LEED AP

Farzana is an Assistant Professor at NYIT. She is principal of FG Design Studio, an independent platform for architectural design, competitions and research pushing innovation within socially conscious and sustainable thought. She is also actively involved as Founder of Design in 5, a group of the Architectural League of New York, formed for designers of all disciplines 5 years of less out of school. Her winning entry for the [spot] national competition was recently built and installed both in Philadelphia, PA and Brooklyn, NY. (Farzana earned a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and a Masters of Architecture with Distinction at Harvard.)

MICHELE BERTOMEN, RA

Michele is an Associate Professor at NYIT. She is a Registered Architect in New York State, has practiced Architecture in New York City for twenty five years. She is a founding member of Brooklyn Architects Collective. She was the principal investigator for NYIT's Solar Decathlon 2005 where NYIT, in collaboration with the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, developed America's first solar hydrogen home. (Michele earned a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University and studied at the Architectural Association in London, UK.)

The SodaBIB's Birthplace: The New York School of Technology

NYIT's School of Architecture and Design provides a design and technology based 21st century professional education that enables leadership in the profession and within the community. The School of Architecture and Design has three Core Values that guide the approach of the School: Design Intelligence, Building Technology, and Leadership.

Design Intelligence refers to broad based skill and intellectual rigor earned by completing a challenging curriculum in design that emphasizes individual creativity, an appreciation of history, culture, and the contributions made by architects to the art and science of building.

Building Technology establishes the importance placed by the School on technology as a part of education in architecture and is made manifest in a well-developed curriculum in structures, environmental systems, sustainability and building construction. Course work is often carried out with hands-on exercises.

Leadership is an attribute of character that the School aspires to instill in graduates and is cultivated in many aspects of their education, including the inclusion of program-wide team projects that demand cohesive interaction and establishment of clear organizational structures to achieve project goals. Leadership is also developed through the holistic and ethical foundations of the NYIT education experience. The School actively participates in and international initiatives where student self confidence is acquired by working in collaboration with other institutions.

How you can Help

This BIB recycled-bottle roofing system can make a big difference in developing countries.

It presents builders with a double benefit. First, it uses readily-found materials of low cost (free) that workers can collect and prepare with little skill. Second, it diverts solid waste - headed for the landfill - and reuses the non-biodegradable plastics in a fashion that values the bottles' durability.

The system requires the prototyping and development of the "Bottle Interface Bracket" (BIB) illustrated above in purple. This device will help an unskilled laborer use the threaded screw-tops of common plastic bottles to quickly assemble roofs with a fraction of the metal fasteners currently used in today's wasteful construction practices.

(More information about NYIT's Architecture Research programs to come...)