Delft Design Stories
Why doesn't it work and can it be fixed?Everyday annoyances: the hoover that suddenly stops working, the washing machine that refuses to spin. Or, a small disaster for the at-home worker, the coffee machine that refuses to give you fuel. And yes, of course you can order a new one, but if you want to contribute to a circular economy, you might also want to see if there is anything that can be repaired. PhD researcher Beatriz Pozo Arcos studied how easily defects in household appliances can be diagnosed, and how design can help users do this.
A Taste of the Food & Eating Design LabHow our society deals with food is of crucial importance. Many societal challenges can be traced back to our relationship with food and eating. “From agricultural production and food waste to growing obesity and diabetes problems. Even mental health can be related to food.” Rick Schifferstein is director of the Food & Eating Design Lab at the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering. Here, researchers, students and companies aim to improve people’s interaction with their daily food and provide solutions that promote people’s health and wellbeing.
These shoes are made for falling…And that’s just what they do. No, it’s not a bad cover version of Nancy Sinatra’s sixties hit. It’s the conclusion of researchers at Delft’s faculty of Industrial Design Engineering (IDE) who have been investigating the suitability of shoes for the elderly. When it comes to shoes, it’s never been a case of one size fits all. Yet the researchers argue that it’s not just shoe size that matters, but the shape of footwear – especially in the over 65 age bracket. Well-fitting and correctly-shaped shoes can improve balance, stability, comfort and safety.
'Blended learning will remain the ideal model for me'Having already won the 2017 award for best lecturer in the Faculty of Industrial Design and Engineering, Associate Professor Giulia Calabretta went on to be elected the 2017 Best Lecturer at Delft University of Technology as a whole by a jury consisting of students and former winners. As a result she is competing for the National ISO Teacher of the Year Award. What makes her teaching so special? And what makes the field of strategic design so valuable?
‘You first have to understand why people are equal before you can understand why they’re different.’Paul Hekkert conducted research for years on the underlying principles of aesthetics and experience. As a ‘scientific figurehead’, these past two years he has mainly focused on creating the knowledge and innovation agenda for the Creative Industry top sector.
People are the key to success in the operating theatreProfessor Jack Jakimowicz will be bidding farewell to the IDE faculty in November, where he has been professor of Safety in Healthcare since 2007. His association with TU Delft goes back much further, however. In the 1990s, he already worked with engineers and researchers on improving the instruments and safety of minimally invasive surgery as a surgeon at the Catharina Hospital in Eindhoven.
DesignScapes: Design-enabled innovation to tackle urban challengesThe European project DESIGNSCAPES officially started last summer, with a celebratory launch in Brussels. Associate Professor Ingrid Mulder is one of the partners in this consortium representing the Industrial Design Engineering faculty at the Delft University of Technology. ‘With DESIGNSCAPES I want to help designers create maximum societal impact.’
'A conversation about informal care always feels premature, until it is too late...''You think to yourself: we'll do that over the Christmas holidays, or on a rainy day. Inevitably, however, you end up too busy doing other things.' Talking to your parents in a timely manner about their care situation in the future is very difficult. But it is important, as a lot of things can come at the same time when parents suddenly need care. Researcher Eefje Ernst designed and tested a method that helps families and informal caregivers on this front.
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.
Out of the Blue #13: Big Fat NonsenseFrom fat shaming to self-acceptance. Join Ianus in a conversation designed for taboo topics as weight and mental health. He talks with IDE alumna Sam van Eijk about her graduation project Big Fat Nonsense.
In the IDE Podcast Series ‘Out of the Blue’, Teacher of Practice Ianus Keller and PhD candidate Frithjof Wegener talk with our designers, researchers, students and teachers about their stories. Thankfully, we’re allowed to listen in.
A box full of jerry can water filters for refugee campsIn early May, Olivier de Gruijter packed a large box of Jerry Can Water Filters. Each one is handcrafted in his workshop. Finally they are going out into the real world, something he has been looking forward to for a long time. Refugees in Gaza and Iraq are going to use the prototypes for the first time. After studying Industrial Design Engineering, De Gruijter came up with a smart, compact water filter that you can screw onto any standard jerry can. A unique and sustainable filter system that rinses itself clean.
Sustainable aviation starts on the groundFlying needs to become more sustainable, quieter and more efficient. For this you need to think far beyond the aircraft itself: airports for example, can contribute as well. In the newly launched Airport Technology Lab, TU Delft researchers are testing their ideas, from better weather forecasting models to faster baggage handling. All of these ideas contribute to improved efficiency in aviation, and a more sustainable industry. Already before the current coronavirus crisis, the aviation industry was facing huge challenges in areas such as sustainability, capacity and noise nuisance. The goal of the Airport Technology Lab (ATL) is to contribute to solving these problems. Since recently, it offers a special environment at Rotterdam The Hague Airport, where new services and products can be developed and tested under realistic and “live” conditions. Knowledge institutions as TU Delft, government bodies such as the City of Rotterdam, and the business community such as the airport and its innovation foundation RHIA, are collaborating closely. Fieldlab for aviation innovation “In other words, ATL is a fieldlab for innovations in aviation, where smart technologies are conceived, developed, tested and put into production", says project manager Elise Bavelaar from TU Delft. “We actually embarked on this course back in 2016 with the Innovation Airport initiative launched by Deltas, Infrastructures & Mobility Initiative (DIMI) and the faculty of Aerospace Engineering. This originated from the need to align all airport-related expertise at TU Delft and to link it together smartly. Of course the ultimate goal is to share this knowledge with parties beyond the university. An important part of Innovation Airport is our ambition to create a Fieldlab and the collaboration with the innovation foundation Rotterdam The Hague Innovation Airport.” The sector remains strongly convinced of the need for innovation, to be honest, I think even more than before the corona crisis. Read more Huge puzzle Airport Technology Lab is meeting this ambition and is thus an important follow-up from the Innovation Airport initiative. “All in all it has been a long journey to get the ATL to take off. It has taken us more than 18 months”, says Bavelaar, who has been involved with Innovation Airport from the start. “An important part of the process was our successful application for ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) funding. It was a huge and complex puzzle to coordinate everything and everyone, with on the one hand the many parties and areas of expertise (within TU Delft alone three faculties are involved, AE, EEMCS and IDE, plus the Innovation & Impact Centre), and on the other hand the different aspects that need to be addressed, ranging from financial affairs to legal issues. A key question was for example whether there was any unlawful state aid for the project.” Personal passion This made the ATL a very special environment for Bavelaar, who has a background in technology. She graduated five years ago from the Faculty of Aerospace Engineering at TU Delft. “Yes, it's a completely different job I have now, but I see that it is a considerable advantage to be well up-to-date on advancements in technology and engineering.” “It is precisely the combination of technology with other aspects that appeals to me. I experienced this in Germany during an internship for my Master's degree. I was working for Air Berlin and focused on improving airport processes. During that internship I discovered I like being involved with more than just the technology.” “My personal passion is to translate academic knowledge into practice. It is important that scientific insights can have a quicker impact on the real world.” Improved forecasting Back to ATL, which was officially opened at the end of May 2020. What makes this specific project unique? “For the most part this is because of the access to relevant airport data that we can use to test and develop new innovations. Of course appropriate measures related to privacy issues have been taken.” Meanwhile, the first tangible research projects have kicked off. “We have started working on three topics”, explains Bavelaar. “They all involve technology to make ground and air activities at airports more efficient and more sustainable in the near future. The first project is on expanding and refining the radar system at the airport. An extremely accurate model for current weather forecasting is being developed which will give Air Traffic Control increased insight into the current weather situation. This model can be used to predict possible turbulence between aircraft under changing weather conditions and this will ultimately lead to more efficient take-off and landing procedures. This part of the ATL project primarily involves the faculty of EEMCS.” Pleasant working environment In the second project, researchers are developing a new tool that can predict airside disruptions using machine learning techniques. This information can be used by planners at the airport to help them make tactical and operational decisions which will also lead to more efficient procedures. As part of the first project, the ‘flight-to-gate planning’ module is being tested. And finally, a tool is being developed which can simulate the efficiency, safety and resilience of processes in the airport terminal. Among other things, this tool enables development of applications for a call-to-gate strategy and passenger flow optimisation. In addition, this tool could be used to assess how the baggage drop-off points impact the flow of passengers in the terminal. According to Bavelaar: “The researchers’ initial experiences are positive. The airport has proven to be a pleasant working environment, with good accessibility and opportunities to test innovations. Moreover, the airport staff and the other stakeholders are more than happy to work with us.” The coronavirus situation demanded a great deal from the students’ capacity for improvisation. Nonetheless, in virtually no time at all they made the necessary practical adjustments, as did the other researchers in the project. This is really something to be proud of. Student involvement “So we're making good progress”, concludes Bavelaar. “An important factor is that we continue to reinforce the vision of DIMI within the project and in particular the emphasis on a multidisciplinary and holistic research approach. Of course there is the link with teaching at TU Delft. For example several student groups of the Interactive Technology Design course, at the faculty of Industrial Design Engineering, have already worked on airport assignments.” “The coronavirus demanded a great deal from the students’ capacity for improvisation. However, in no time at all they made the necessary practical adjustments, as did the other researchers in the project. This is really something to be proud of.” Bavelaar is aware that the current times have huge consequences for the aviation sector as a whole. “Yet the impact on the ATL project seems less bad than we feared, and if anything the coronavirus crisis has reinforced the need for innovation.” Read more stories of Aerospace Engineering Project Manager ir. M.E. (Elise) Bavelaar M.E.Bavelaar@tudelft.nl More stories More stories
LandShapes: made to feel realMaster’s student in industrial design Frederik Ueberschär used artificial intelligence to create non-existent satellite images of the earth’s surface in his interactive installation LANDSHAPES. People can change these landscapes, and in this playful way he wants to involve them emotionally in climate change.
How the Intensive Care brings music to your earsWhen someone you care about is hospitalised, the situation is difficult under any circumstances.
But during a pandemic, when you can’t visit them, the stress is even greater. Recent Best Graduate of Industrial Design Engineering Chen Chou developed a way for people to stay in touch, with music.
Out of the Blue #19: Is it good enough?How do you know if an idea is good? Is it a hunch, a gut feeling? Or can you learn to systematically recognise good ideas and move them further to make them work? In this episode, we talk with Jeroen van Erp, Professor of Concept Design at TU Delft and founder of influential Dutch design agency Fabrique. About ad agencies, how to learn design, and plastic soup. You’re not allowed to leave the podcast without at least 10 new ideas!
In the IDE Podcast Series ‘Out of the Blue’, Teacher of Practice Ianus Keller or PhD candidate Frithjof Wegener talks with our designers, researchers, students and teachers about their stories. Thankfully, we’re allowed to listen in.