This new laser cutter allows student architects to get into much finer levels of detail in their work. (UWM Photo/Derek Rickert)
The Rapid Prototyping Lab contains state-of-the art equipment so that architecture students get comfortable with technologies and techniques used in the construction industry today. (UWM Photo/Derek Rickert)
Architecture alumnus Dan Wilhelms contributed $91,000 to his alma mater, the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at UWM, to help the Fab Lab buy this advanced handheld laser scanning probe and comprehensive reverse engineering software. (UWM Photo/Derek Rickert)
3-D printers can help architects produce exact models of fasteners and other components to test how they work in practice. (UWM Photo/Derek Rickert)
Engineering graduate student Joe Patzer gets to work in architecture’s Rapid Prototyping Lab. (UWM Photo/Derek Rickert)
“The relationship between architecture and construction is basically changing because of advances in digital technology coming from construction and manufacturing,” explained Gil Snyder, associate professor in the School of Architecture and Urban Planning at UWM. “Those changes are now part of architectural practice and design.”
Much of that new technology is housed in the school’s Rapid Prototyping Lab, which allows students to reproduce exact copies of historic building details, fine tune ideas for wall-fastening systems and test them in three dimensions, or check out how varied design configurations for a building panel might minimize the impact of pollution on an exterior wall.
Also known as the “Fab Lab,” there’s much more to explore in this state-of-the-art student design center.