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Unique Collaboration + Student Input = AMIE 1.0


“Working with partners and community members illustrates that we are better together than we are individually. Diverse project teams that include a mechanism for community outreach and dialogue are better able to tackle the pressing concerns of our time.” – James Rose, Director, Institute for Smart Structures

AMIE (the Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy 3D-Printed Structure) is a system that demonstrates the integration of generating, using and storing electrical power by sharing energy between a building and a vehicle, both of which were built using the additive manufacturing process of 3D printing.

The AMIE prototype was designed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill with collaboration from students and faculty in the College of Architecture and Design.  It was unveiled at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in September 2015 and will be on display at the UT Humanities Plaza Oct. 19-23, 2015.

Throughout the past decade, the University of Tennessee College of Architecture and Design has worked on several net-zero prototype buildings. In partnership with the Oak Ridge National Labs’  Building Technologies Research and Integration Center and others, the college’s Institute for Smart Structures has focused its research on emerging materials and their impact on energy-efficient and energy-harvesting building envelopes.

In this context, AMIE can be seen as the most recent in a series of three full-scale prototypes that each build upon their predecessor’s innovations.

The first in the series was the UTZero prototype, a 300-square-foot net-zero building designed in collaboration with Dr. William Miller of the BTRIC and built entirely by students. This project set the precedent for the two future projects with its focus on photovoltaic power, use of shading devices, highly efficient but translucent enclosure, and exploration of floor-mounted LEDs to supplement daylighting.

Following the success of UTZero, the Institute for Smart Structures embarked upon the design and construction of the Living Light house for the 2011 Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Decathlon. In collaboration with eight programs on UT’s campus and working again with Dr. Miller, Living Light built on the technologies explored in UTZero. A significant feature of the house is the transparent double façade with its passive heating and integrated lighting. With its electric car charging station, the Living Light house was designed to be a net-zero compact housing and transportation solution for two occupants. In this regard, it foreshadows the AMIE prototype.

Read more: AMIE 3D-Printed Structure Developed through Unique Collaboration, Student Input

The Institute for Smart Structures was nominated as a Partnership that Makes a Difference. Click here to read more.