Tropical Architecture and Engineering Themes

  • Smart People- First Cities in the Tropics.

    In the future, the highest rate of urbanisation is expected to be in the Tropics. The pressure on cities will be overwhelming. Today, cities account for 65 % of global energy use and 70 % of man-made carbon emissions. The smart city concept is the holistic view that applies ICT and which strives for providing better life quality, represented by the four pillars of comprehensive development – institutional, physical, social and economic infrastructure. How do the special characteristics of the Tropics affect the attainment of a Smart City? How do we harness new technology and the new social contracts in the way we design and build sustainable cities in the Tropics?

  • Green Energy in the Tropics.

    Renewables such as solar, wind, biomass, hydro, geothermal, and marine (wave, OTEC, marine current) services can be used to substitute fossil fuel. According to some estimates, more than 300 times the energy currently consumed is available from the solar energy that is constantly stored in the upper layers of the tropical ocean. On an average day, 60 million square kilometres of tropical seas absorb an amount of solar radiation equivalent in heat content to around 250 billion barrels of oil. Tapping into that potential has been the goal of OTEC scientists for more than a century. In the tropics, continuous sunshine is advantageous in providing individualised solar energy and operating solar farms. The latter have capacities of generating electric power, ranging from 10 (Megawatts) MW to 150 MW. The great potential of renewables in the Tropics cannot be underestimated.

  • Leading Edge Materials Development for the Tropics.

    A new wave in chemistry and material sciences is bringing to the marketplace new innovative materials that can be designed for tropical conditions and are resilient against changing climate conditions. This next generation of high-performing materials will help accelerate unique architectural and engineering designs and solutions for the Tropics.