Eco Friendly Material

There are a large variety of choices for the exterior material of buildings depending on the material(s) of the wall(s). Such a variety of material exists to create unique/ artistic designs, and/ or high sustainability or environmental friendliness. Designers choose the appropriate material to create their ideal buildings: they focus on both the design and the function. Recently, there has been a large drive behind architecture to become environmentally, which goes hand in hand with the recent social drive to become environmentally friendly. Solar panels can easily be classified as the key representative of this eco-friendly movement. Solar panels are usually used on roofs or walls to collect and generate electric energy from the sun, one of the most natural resources. Also, the surplus of the energy, which they generate, can be sold to electric power companies for profit. Another wonderful quality of solar paneling is that it can be attached to almost any common surface material (brick, wood, concrete, etc.). Therefore, the use of solar panels is generally suggested and approved, since they are ecological and, in the long run economical, despite the fact that their initial purchase price is quite expensive. However, solar paneling has it’s own downfall, and that is it’s dependency on the sun; if weather conditions are unfavorable, energy won’t be collected, period. Compared with this disadvantage, the numerous advantages and public approval still make solar paneling an attractive option to architects and designers alike. I think that, given the concept of solar panels (eco friendly and scientifically inclined), the contemporary vibe they give off, and their generally advantageous design, they would be a wonderful choice of exterior cladding for the new Experimental Physics and Nanotechnology Building at the University of Minnesota.


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