Building Community: Working with University Students on Design Project

We’ve been working with a group of engineering students from University of Colorado Boulder on their senior design project. For this year-long project, the group of nine students has been working with our in-house engineering team to create an interactive demonstration of the upcoming Surna Hybrid building.

The first semester of this two semester project was spent getting acquainted with the Hybrid Building design and creating plans for a scale-model design. This model will ultimately be used by Surna to clearly demonstrate the benefits of the Surna Hybrid and will include a device to simulate sunlight and a heater to simulate solar heat gain as well as working LEDs and a black-out curtain.

Additionally, the team created a mathematical model  showcasing the energy flows throughout the greenhouse. This included developing a system of equations to calculate the energy required, and thus the cost of electricity, to operate the hybrid building any day of the year and with any surrounding climate conditions. Ultimately, costs calculated by this program will show a just how energy efficient the Surna Hybrid is, while still producing the same amount, if not more cannabis than conventional grow operations.

The second semester will be spent creating the building model. The building designs have been finalized and the team is ready to start building via machining, laser cutting and 3D printing. A lot of testing and finalizing will occur over the next few months in order to create the final project.

The second semester is just getting started and we’re excited to see the finished product sometime in May and share their progress with you along the way. Over the next couple of months, we will be checking in with the students to see how the project is progressing and sharing updates.

Beyond that, we look forward to sharing the model with you at trade shows later this year!

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