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July 13, 2020

Shape-shifting furniture inspired by Venus flytrap

"Flat pack furniture" may soon have a new meaning. Purdue researchers have developed a 3D printing method that emulates the switchable bistability of the Venus flytrap plant. This breakthrough in material science may soon inspire flat objects that snap into their final stable form with very little external force.
June 18, 2020

Will empty middle seats on airplanes slow Coronavirus?

Airlines have been leaving the middle seats empty on many of their flights. Does this actually help stop the spread of COVID-19? The answer is complicated, as Prof. Yan Chen explains in this video from Vox.
May 20, 2020

Refrigeration in developing countries

We take refrigeration for granted, but for developing countries it can become a game-changer for health, agriculture, and economic opportunities. Engineers Without Borders turned to the HVAC experts at Purdue's Herrick Labs to help create the "Chill Challenge," where teams build devices that can make ice and cold water at minimal cost.
May 7, 2020

Putting the "smart" in smart buildings

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) are in the spotlight now more than ever before. We need to make buildings smarter, so they autonomously adjust to the needs of their occupants. This is happening right now at Herrick Labs, the largest academic HVAC lab in the world.
May 4, 2020

Pursuing the future of lunar habitation

Soon we'll be returning to the Moon. But how will we live there long-term? Prof. Shirley Dyke is working with NASA to design resilient extra-terrestrial habitats, with the cyber-physical hybrid prototype hosted at Herrick Labs.
April 29, 2020

How to stop diseases from spreading on airplanes

In the wake of the SARS epidemic in 2003, Prof. Yan Chen worked with Boeing on how to recirculate air in their airplanes to prevent the spread of airborne diseases. Did it work? Find out in this deep dive from the Washington Post.
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