The School of Architecture is proud to announce that PhD student Lola Ben-Alon has been awarded first place, and a $1,000 prize, in the annual CMU Energy Week Student Poster Competition. Ben-Alon’s poster presented her doctoral research work, entitled Integrating Earthen Building Materials and Methods Into Mainstream Construction. She thanks her outstanding advisory committee of SoA professors Vivian Loftness (chair) and Erica Cochran Hameen, as well as professor Kent Harries from the University of Pittsburgh Civil & Environmental Engineering program, for guiding her research and for their significant contributions to this project.
Ben-Alon's research deals with the challenges of using earthen building materials, which offer sustainable alternatives to conventional materials used in construction. The environmental and policy measures she is working on are intended to help policymakers include earthen materials in mainstream construction projects, resulting in broader adoption development of a healthy, low impact, built environment.
Now in its fourth year, the poster competition allows students and postdoctoral researchers to network with energy leaders and share their cutting-edge research with attendees of CMU Energy Week. CMU Energy Week convenes energy experts, CEOs and corporate executives, government officials, nonprofits, key influencers, students, and entrepreneurs for a facilitated dialogue on how to advance energy technologies and innovations around the world.
A committee of experts from business, industry, government, nonprofit, and academia judge the posters in early March. The most compelling 30 posters were displayed at the poster session, and the award recipients recognized at a reception on Tuesday, 26 March 2019. Posters featured STEM and Non-STEM related research, and $2,250 in total prizes were awarded to the most compelling posters.
First Place ($1,000): Integrating Earthen Building Materials and Methods Into Mainstream Construction by Lola Ben-Alon
Second Place ($500): Powering the future with waste water by Carolyn Goodman, Daksha Bopanna, and Vibhor Kumar
Third Place ($250): Why Rapid and Deep Decarbonization isn’t simple by Turner Cotterman
Best In-Person Presentation ($250): Engineers Without Borders: Energy Solutions for Nyadire, Zimbabwe by CMU Engineers without Borders
People’s Choice ($250): Can autonomous light vehicles be fully electric? by Aniruddh Mohan and Shashank Sripad