designer, educator, grant recipient

reIntegrate new haven – grant

  • Grant Writing
  • Team Lead
  • Google Sketchup

In 2013 Dr.Karen Bliss and myself (PI) were awarded a grant from the New Haven Arts Council for a project that combined art and science – we were one out of 42 that applied and 7 were chosen. Our project, Cross-Discipline Learning, combined design and applied mathematics to explore making beer. Our team created a HERMS beer machine to improve beer-making (from design of equipment to control of the beer-making process) at MakeHaven, a New Haven workshop for tinkerers, hackers, and makers of all things.

This Reintegrate team was also comprised of design and math students from Quinnipiac University (Nicholas Baldoni, Tim Ostheimer, Katelyn Stoll, Samantha Epstein, Nicole Cornetto, Lawrence D‘Onofrio, Ricky Lencsak, Caitlyn Hannum, and Zach Freed), as well as members from MakeHaven (Rich Rogers, Michael Mckien, and Andrew Chastain).

The team first set out to make a beer-making machine following the HERMS template. (HERMS stands for Heat Exchanged Recirculating Mash System). The team is changing the way the machine‘s electrical and plumbing system works to streamline the beer-making process.

In addition to the production of the physical system, the team is also considering the mathematical aspects of brewing, including the fermentation process. Additionally, they are studying biochemistry in order to produce a gluten-removed beer, which they are going to make by adding an enzyme called Clarity-Ferm.

The design students have redesigned and tweaked an existing, difficult to use, interface skeleton called Brewtroller, in order to allow people to better use their beer-making machine. The machine is actually controlled by an app worked on by Rich Rogers and the Quinnipiac students.

This project is a good example of people learning through doing ‘ by working together the team has encountered questions that span math, industrial and software design, chemistry, as well as plumbing and electrical issues.

I represented our team at the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, at the Yale Museum of British Art, as well as on a panel moderated by Carl Zimmer.