Delft Design Stories
From The Start: The Early Design Bird Gets The Remanufacturing WormThe circular economy. Sustainability. Refurbishment. Remanufacturing. Recycling. We hear these buzzwords used all the time when talking about how humanity needs to lessen its impact on the planet. For her PhD research, Nina Boorsma looked into how to get companies to make more sustainable products and found that the process needs to start early.
What makes a circular designer?It makes sense that designing for a circular economy requires something different than the traditional linear approach. Because it’s not just about creating sustainable products, it’s about an entire system aimed at reducing resource use and waste. For her PhD research, Deborah Sumter wanted to find out what competencies designers need to develop to be successful at circular design.
How to paint convincing stuffIf you see a bunch of grapes, how does your brain understand that those are real grapes and not ones made of plastic? And if you see those grapes in a painting - say a 17th-century piece of Dutch Golden Age art - how does your brain understand that those are also grapes? That’s what Francesca Di Cicco wanted to know for her PhD thesis.
The unique train toilet challengeThe toilet touches all our lives, but we don’t want to touch the toilet. In other words, we try to keep a distance from toilets, particularly those in public. However, these toilets are what makes it possible for us to leave our homes and travel. More specifically, anyone travelling by train is used to having free access to train toilets, certainly on long journeys. But, as they are perceived as being dirty, they are greatly underused. A dilemma for railway companies and a challenge for sanitary designer and PhD graduate Marian Loth.
Persuasive technology for health and wellbeing at workElsbeth de Korte isn’t your typical Ph.D. student. When she defends her thesis later this month, on how technology can improve health and well-being in the workplace, she will have already been working at the Dutch research institute TNO for more than twenty years.
LandShapes: made to feel realYou might think that smart devices – something that can connect to the internet or another device – would be more sustainable. After all, if the lights and the thermostat only turn on when a person is present, they should use less energy. ‘But’ says Emilia Ingemarsdotter, ‘every technology has a hype phase’. For her PhD research, she wanted to look beyond the hype and critically examine the role internet-enabled devices play in the circular economy.
A robot with a soft touchTry and picture a robotic hand and an image of metal fingers with rigid joints might come to mind. Imagine instead one made of soft materials that can dextrously grip an apple, automatically adjust to its shape, and pluck it from a tree. Rob Scharff, through his PhD research, explores how the emerging field of soft robotics has the potential to revolutionise the future of robotic manipulation.
"Humans don't develop like machines."When Stefan Persaud took over the second-year bachelor’s course Product Dynamics at Industrial Design, he brought along his motto: "If you can't reach them, you can't teach them." Persaud believes in student-centred teaching, where lecturers focus on how students best learn and engage students in active learning.
Delft Design Stories
Read the stories of researchers and students at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, and discover the scientific questions on which they work and the solutions they present.