Aerial view of a city on the waterfront

Full report for the Spring 2020 course, Urban Regeneration in the Americas: The Conservation and Development of Urban Heritage Areas, where eleven Wetizman students traveled to Cartagena, Colombia to explore emerging issues related to implementing a growing international consensus on the role played by urban heritage in the social and economic development of communities.

MRT Simulation

Dr. Aviv and her team have developed a novel mean radiant temperature (MRT) simulation tool. The tool uses raytracing and human body geometry to provide high-resolution spatial analysis of MRT distribution in indoor environments . The simulation is constructed to aid designers in analyzing the impact of architectural form and materials on the embodied perception of heat. 

Team: Julie Gros, Miaomiao Hou, Jiewei Li.

Collaborators: Forrest Meggers, Eric Teitelbaum, Jovan Pantelic

Section diagram of Hydroculous

Dorit Aviv, Maryam Moradnejad, Aletheia Ida, Zherui Wang, Eric Teitelbaum, Forrest Meggers

A roof aperture lined with hydrogel membrane is proposed for combined evaporative and radiative cooling in the desert climate. Digital simulation tools of CFD, solar radiation, and radiant sky cooling analysis, were employed to analyze the overall geometry and material impact on airflow and radiant heat exchange.

Segemented human body emitting rays in all direction, representing thermal radiation

Dorit Aviv, Miaomiao Hou, Hongshan Guo, Eric Teitelbaum, Forrest Meggers.

In order to make the embodied effect of radiant surfaces' geometry legible, we have developed a Mean Radiant Temperature simulation tool which is based on a raytracing technique and accounts for the detailed geometry of the human body and its surrounding environment.

Read the full article on ResearchGate.

Reti Center Site View

Image credit: RETI Center

The Blue City Lab will be the first off-grid, community-based, floating climate lab in the US. The project is planned to be built in the Upper Bay of New York City in the Red Hook neighborhood. It is a model for climate-responsive architectural innovation combined with low-energy building systems and renewable energy harvesting.

The Thermal Architecture Lab is leading the energy and environmental analysis aspects of the design.

Team: Dorit Aviv, Mrinalini Verma

A series of ribs converge in a central oculus

The Hydroculus is a roof aperture, an oculus lined with hydrogel, for combined evaporative and radiative cooling in desert climates.

Rendering of large evoluting cylindrical tower with lattice structure

This research project is led by PennPraxis Faculty Dr. Dorit Aviv in collaboration with Dr. Aletheia Ida, Assistant Professor at the University of Arizona, and Dr. Forrest Meggers, Assistant Professor at Princeton University.

Orthographic view of brickworks site on river's edge with warf, kilns, drying yard and rail access

PennPraxis is collaborating with landscape architecture office, OLIN with on-site investigations and the conceptual design of Quarry Waters Park in Kingston City, New York.

The Quarry Waters Park is located on a historically important industrial site that led Hudson Valley’s brick and cement production from the 1850s-1990s. The main ambition of this project is to transform this post-industrial site into a multi-layered public amenity that serves both the local community in Kingston and tourists moving through the region.

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PennPraxis is collaborating with Futurepolis in the Schematic and Design Development phases of a new campus for the Zhengzhou Institute of Finance and Economics in China's Henan Province.

Child sleeping on couch with record player on table

Sharon Hayes

5-channel HD video, colour, sound; installation

Dimensions variable

Edition of 5 + 2 AP


Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Leighton, Berlin


The ability for anyone or any-body to appear in public space is determined by multiple conditions. At any given time and place, certain things are visible, audible, recognizable, and other things are not. How, why, whether, and for whom, people or things appear publicly is a political, social, economic, and aesthetic concern.

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Scenic Hudson is partnering with PennPraxis to stop the power plant that is proposed at Danskammer Point, a site on the edge of the Hudson River in the town of Newburgh, NY.

 Map of Madison Parks WI showing very loose coralation between gun violence and liquor store locations

PennPraxis is working with the The State Gun Law Project, a research initiative that takes a data-driven approach to studying the relationship between gun legislation and gun violence. Praxis is performing geospatial analyses of The State Gun Law Project's gun crime data, a novel dataset that consists of decades of geolocated gun crimes and suspected gun crimes from 34 American cities.