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Penn State College of Arts and Architecture
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Smart Materials and Buildings

A diagram of the different components of a building with smart materials for its exterior.

The goal of the project is to use new technologies to support context-sensitive, responsive, or smart design at different scales.

The idea is to develop strategies to design and operate built structures that are optimized from a multitude of viewpoints, consume the least amount of energy and material resources while guaranteeing high performance standards. Among the technologies used are smart materials, digital fabrication, generative systems, machine learning, and optimization.

José Pinto Duarte Stuckeman Chair in Design Innovation; Director, Stuckeman Center for Design Computing Learn More
Benay Gürsoy Toykoç Assistant Professor of Architecture Learn More

More about this project

Project Partners

News + Media




  • Elena Vazquez (Stuckeman School)
  • Xiaoyue Zhao (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Berfin Evrim (Stuckeman School)
  • Vyom Mehta (MATSE)
  • Edward Maxwell Vitelli (Mechanical Engineering)
  • John Ryan O’Sullivan (Computer Engineering)
  • Abdulrahman Khalid A Taher (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Pryia Pradhan (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Nicholas Myers
  • Kaitlyn McKee (Mechanical Engineering)


  • SCDC
  • Waddell Biggart Graduate Fellowship
  • CDR Grant 2020
  • AIA Upjohn Grant 2020


  • Vazquez, E., Poerschke, U., & Duarte, J. “Masonry screen walls: A digital framework for optimizing environmental performance through brick configuration,” in Architectural Science Review. DOI: 10.1080/00038628.2020.1749552 (Published online: 10 Apr 2020)
  • Vazquez, E., Gursoy, B., & Duarte, J. (2020). “Formalizing Shape-Change in Design: 3D Printed Shapes and Hydro-Responsive Material Transformations.” International Journal of Architectural Computing, Volume: 18 issue: 1, page(s): 1-17. DOI: 10.1177/1478077119895216
  • Vazquez, E.; Randall, C,; Duarte, J.P.. “Shape-changing architectural skins: A review on materials, design, and fabrication strategies and performance analysis.” Journal of Facade Design and Engineering 7, no. 2 (2019): 93-114.