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Using AI to Build a Sustainable Future- From the Ground Up!

Artificial intelligence has the potential of changing all aspects of our lives. More recently, AI has shown engineers how to build physical structures such as modular housing, skyscrapers, and factories. Many problems engineers are currently dealing with are at the lengths of human capacity. With AI capabilities many of these problems could be solved, such as in the design process AI can explore solutions and ideas that humans alone could not consider.



The current productions of the building are only focused on a few aspects of a product life cycle. The product life cycle is all the stages that a manufactured product goes through, it starts at sourcing materials, refining materials, construction, and waste disposal or recycling. The problem with current building standards, skyscrapers and other large buildings can not be sustainably disassembled for reuse in other projects. AI has posed as a solution to this major problem. The key to the solution is to start in the earliest stages of the building design process. Decisions around sustainability happen in phases when you are creating. Generative design pieces could result in solutions that anticipate future needs and requirements that will help to avoid having to build new solutions, products or infrastructure. A building does not have to be built for one purpose any more, with AI degenerative design a building could have multiple uses in its lifecycle, reducing waste and offering a more sustainable solution.


Generative design is a computer technology which is allowing designers to expand their capabilities and explore possibilities and solutions that would not be possible before. Humans have a set of limitations but we have the ability to be creative without limitations. This is the same as a computer, computers may have limitations such as computing power, but understanding the law of physics and mathematical calculations happen very quickly in a computer. With computer’s computational power and humans’ creative abilities, the design process can go a lot further. There has been a lot of talk around AI taking over people’s jobs, but AI should be seen as a partnership with humans.


AI is not only solving problems in the world with humans, but also improving human conditions. AI is a tool that is providing humans with solutions that would otherwise not be possible. AI is not just about automating a problem or doing something more efficiently. AI has the power to continue learning and understanding where the human mind has its limitations. AI working with humans in the generative design process is not only solving a current issue in building, but is solving a handful of future issues such as properly disassembling skyscrapers for future use, making sure there is not a shortage in rare building materials, and overall reducing our environmental footprint on the earth.


We are in a time of environmental stress, we need more solutions that could help current environmental problems and potential future environmental problems. AI seems to be the best way we can create a sustainable future and continue to innovate and grow while staying within our planetary boundaries.


Blog by Julian DiFelice

Director of Technology Strategy at TechXplore


To Read more, please go to: https://www.technologyreview.com/2022/01/19/1043819/sustainability-starts-in-the-design-process-and-ai-can-help/?mc_cid=33f3d3bbde


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