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[Group 08] El Salvador

Week 4

posted 19 Jun 2012, 04:20 by Group Design Projects Imperial

We eased off the gas in week 3 and despite having great ideas for the critical session on Friday we did not deliver, with structures seeming to be lacking.  Subsequently, apart from our individual parts of the project, all members of the group (except Adam) worked on an aspect of the structural mechanics, either for the house or the school.

The advantage of having a shocker in the 3rd critical session was that we got back into gear for the final push, getting ready to sprint the last 100m after a marathon.  Having structural engineers as both supervisor and client meant we had to impress in the 4th week critical session, something which we delivered.  At half time, Skempton decided enough was enough so Dr Hong Wong, who had a solid game was replaced by a product of the Toronto youth team Dr Keirstead.  Fresh legs brought fresh questions and some valuable advice on sustainability.  We didn’t go for a simple steel design and made it hard for ourselves as we used more appropriate local bahareque designs, with confined masonry and a timber frame structure.  As a result, the structural calculations went well beyond anything we have been taught and once we were done with the Eurocodes, they looked a little tired as we approached extra time.  

Our captain, Tallett-Williams made some raucous challenges all over the park, but it was the leadership we needed.  Our midfield calculations in slope stability and structural design helped us to control the project, while our google sketchup strikeforce was deadly, scoring school, toilet and house designs all in 3D.  

An overall solid performance this week, well played team.

Week 3

posted 9 Jun 2012, 06:00 by Group Design Projects Imperial

The third week brought the long weekend of the Diamond Jubilee and subsequently a more relaxed atmosphere.  For Monday and Tuesday we took it easy, but maintained a team atmosphere by gorging over a brunch at the creperie in South Ken.  This gave us a chance to gather our thoughts as we came into the week of detailed designs and beginning calculations.

The second critical session, falling at 4-6pm on Friday evening, was not exactly ideal timing, but with the clients impressed with the work and giving constructive criticism about the project it was a real success. 

We have diverted away from our original positions to integrated designs, such as our structures team, water supply team and community team working on earthquake resistant housing, a task far harder than we expected.  The vital access to the village and its slope stability, can be for the most part, made safe through adequate drainage for the ridge where San José de Costa Rica is situated.  Therefore the geo and transport teams have been working on drainage.
The team members and their tasks over the week are as follows:

Team MemberPosition Tasks
Sarah Tallett-WilliamsTeam LeaderDetailed School design, electricity and fire prevention
Benjamin GaitskellMedia OfficerCommunity Integration, Logistics and Tex
Pedro Alonso CaprileTex OperatorDesign of bamboo composting latrines & waste mgt
Charlotte LewisLogisticianRoad drainage design and fire safety
Adam SierensWeekly ReporterSlope drainage and soft engineering methods
Edmond VeillardWHO AmbassadorWater supply, earthquake design
Louise Foukles
SecretarySolar farm design, earthquake design
Constantinos KyprianouLiaison OfficerImproving house design and earthquake design

Week 2

posted 2 Jun 2012, 08:00 by Group Design Projects Imperial

For the second week we had to develop our initial ideas, moving on from overall research to focused research on the more preferred solutions from the clients and ourselves from the first critical session. 
With further research into each individual’s field of expertise, we started to have daily group critical sessions, where we would present what we have done each day, then willingly accept any barrage of opinion from anyone of the team.  This would help us critically assess ourselves, such that we would think about any ideas or problems further.  An example of this is the idea of cutting slopes, installing small vertical bamboo retaining walls then planting vegetation along the horizontal sections.  In our own critical session we realised that the type of vegetation would be important – if we use  bamboo, socially, it could help the area by using it as a resource, but whether another type of tree gives more binding to the soil requires further consideration.

We are beginning to see the merging of the several fields.  With the water supply issue, to pump water using a well requires electricity, which will then affect how much electricity we require to San José de Costa Rica.  Another example is the structural design will dictate the surcharge upon the slope, hence affecting the slope stability.

The team members and their tasks over the week are as follows:

Team MemberPosition Tasks
Sarah Tallett-WilliamsTeam LeaderElectricity and school design
Benjamin GaitskellMedia OfficerMaterials, new Housing design and retrofitting 
Pedro Alonso CaprileTex OperatorWastewater treatment, report formatting
Charlotte LewisLogisticianTransport, drainage and school design
Adam SierensWeekly ReporterGeology, slope stability calculations, design flow charts
Edmond VeillardWHO AmbassadorWater treatment and supply, future planning
Louise Foukles
SecretaryEarthquake resistant housing design, school planning
Constantinos KyprianouLiaison OfficerNew housing design, roof design and sketch-up model

Week 1

posted 30 May 2012, 07:34 by Group Design Projects Imperial

The brief is to design a sustainable, safe, low cost and long term village for 1200 people in a seismically active region, El Salvador, where the existing homes are mostly destroyed or require retrofitting.  There are many aspects of this major development so as a team we decided to split up and assess the following issues; transportation, slope stability, water, wastewater, electricity, new housing design and retrofitting possibilities.  For the first week our aim was to be creative, gain all data required for the design from in depth research and offer the client many possible options for the development, ranging in their cost benefit, sustainability, social impact, constructability, heath, safety and risk. 

The team members and their tasks over the week are as follows:

Team Member Position  Tasks
Sarah Tallett-Williams Team Leader Electricity, Slope Stability, Repair of Houses
Benjamin Gaitskell Media Officer Materials, New Housing Design
Pedro Alonso Caprile Tex Operator Wastewater Treatment
Charlotte Lewis Logistician Transport and School Design
Adam Sierens Weekly Reporter Slope Stability, Retaining Walls
Edmond Veillard WHO Ambassador Water Treatment and Supply
Louise Foukles
Secretary Construction Techniques, New Housing Design
Constantinos Kyprianou Liaison Officer Retrofitting and New Housing Design

For our first critical session we presented to the clients with a large range of possibilities, to which the clients, Dr Hong Wong and Sebastian Kaminski (Arup), were taken aback from our magnitude of options and expressed interest in several designs, helping us to dismiss some of the less favoured ideas, mainly for practicality issues.  The session went very well and the feedback was helpful.

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