Environmental Sustainability

Our efforts in environmental sustainability are based on

The Department has a focused effort in the built environment.  The effort combines thermal modeling, zero net energy design and evaluation, manufacturing of structural insulated panel (SIP) and thermal measurements, functional biocomposites through nanophase treatments:

  • Zero-net energy whole building integration and evaluation, and thermal modeling: Yong Tao
  • Solar integrated building envelop: Jiangtao
  • Zero carbon footprint structured insulated panels: D’Souza and Shi
  • Occupant behavior and thermal comfort via facial recognition:  Burzo
  • Thermal measurements: Yong Tao, Tae Youl Choi
Zero Energy Lab

Environmental Sustainability / Energy Efficient Buildings

The Department has a focused effort in the built environment.

Grants
  • N. A. D’Souza, Y. Tao, Prasad (MEE), Allen (Biology) S. Brumbley Farmer-Academic-Industry Partnerships for Innovation in the Built Environment, National Science Foundation $600,000, 9/1/2011-8/31/2014
  • N. A. D’Souza and B. Ayre (and H. Lu, UTD), Collaborative Proposal: Characterization and Modeling of Natural Fiber Polymer Matrix Composites for Correlating Natural Fiber/Matrix Morphology, National Science FoundationCMMI $375,000 total - $233,600 UNT, 6/1/2010 -5/31/2014
  • Shi, Impregnated inorganic nanoparticle at the natural fiber-thermoplastic polymer interface, NSF-CMMI $116,881, 11/1/11-8/30/13
  • Tai, US-China Workshop for Cyber-Enabled, User-Oriented, Interoperability Modeling for Engineering Sustainable Built Environments, Beijing, China, NSF $59,552, 12/11-11/13
Publications
  1. N. A. D’Souza, M. S. Allen, K. Stevens, B. Ayre, D. K. Visi, S. Vidhate, I. Ghamarian, and C. L. Webber III, (2011) “Biocomposites: The Natural Fiber Contribution from Bast and Woody Plants”. In: C.L. Webber III and A. Liu (Eds.). Plant Fibers as Renewable Feedstocks for Biofuel and Bio-based Products.  CCG International Inc (2011)
  2. J. Shi, S. Q. Shi, H. M. Barnes, M. Horstemeyer, and Ge Wang. 2011. Kenaf Bast Fibers -- Part II: Inorganic Nanoparticle Impregnation for Polymer Composites. Special Issue on “Natural Fibers, Bio- and Nanocomposites”, International Journal of Polymer Science. Vol. 2011, ID 736474.
  3. T. Jiru, and Y.-X. Tao, Airflow and heat transfer in double skin facades Energy and Buildings, Energy and Building, Volume: 43, Issue: 10, pp. 2760-2766 (2011).
  4. Y. Tao, and Y. Jiang, Analytics in Building-scale Sustainable Ecosystems, Begell House, NY, 2013.
Partnerships
  • Steve Brumbley, Brian Ayre, Biology UNT, new plant bioresources that can be engineered to make sustainable products
  • Dr. Stan Ingram, Sociolog, UNT, social impact
  • Dr. Ruthanne Thompson, Enviromental sustaiability
  • Todd Spinks, Office of Sustaianbility, UNT
  • Future House Real Estate Co, Beijing, China
  • Tsinghua University, China
  • Tongji University, China
  • Hongkong Polytechnic University
  • University of Tartu, Estonia
  • Federal University of Ponta Grossa, Brazil
  • Lucia Innocenti-Mei at Campinas, Brazil collaborates on converting amazon waste into renewable source bioproducts for housing
  • Texas A&M, Purdue, U of Wisconsin, UNCC.
In the news

NBC 6: UNTs Sustainability Efforts Earn National Recognition: The Princeton Review has named the University of North Texas among the “greenest colleges” in the US. The Denton-based school made the cut for the third year in a row due to the many sustainability efforts underway on campus. To learn more about UNT efforts to stay green click here.

ZOE in the Dallas News

Kera on kenaf

Industries working with MEE:

Halliburton, Texas Instruments, Pepsico, Weber Aircraft, Exide Technogies, Freese & Nichols, Group CBS, BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Bell Helicopter, Lockheed Martin, Luminant Power, Peterbilt, Peerless Manufacturing, ARAMARK, Goodson Engineering, BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Denbury Resources, GM Pepco Energy, Sylvania, MP2 Energy

All companies featured in ZOE Lab:

Schneider Electric, Axim Solar, Nucor, BlueScope Water, H2Options, Benchmark