SMIT (Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology)
SMIT's mission is to create Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology. SMIT's work will connect and provide for people in pursuit of a zero footprint lifestyle by creating a rich portfolio of products and a dense network of relationships.
SMIT was founded as a start-up in the Fall of 2005 by brother and sister Samuel Cochran & Teresita Cochran, and is currently located in Brooklyn, New York. As of November 2007, SMIT formed SMIT - Sustainably Minded Interactive Technology, LLC and brought on an Architectural Designer, Benjamin Wheeler Howes.
GROW - Solar Ivy
SMIT's first and on-going project, GROW, aims to create hybrid energy solutions. GROW's first iteration is called Solar Ivy and it's a combination of solar energy and wind energy.
The Solar Ivy utilizes a structural stainless steel mesh system, which is manufactured by Carl Stahl Decorcable in Germany. Their system is designed to enable plants (such as ivy and other crawlers) to grow up the sides of buildings without causing damage to the building's exteriors, a typical problem of many vertical gardens.
The leaves are made of 100% recyclable polyethylene, and are available in a variety of colors and opacities. The solar cells are thin film flexible photovoltaic modules encapsulated in Tefzel, and are manufactured by PowerFilm Solar. Solar Ivy is a flexible system that can adapt to most building types, sizes, orientations and latitudes. They have the ability to provide varying degrees of opacity to modulate heat gain, light transmission and view. Because of our modular design, future iterations of Solar Ivy will be able to include more efficient and less expensive PV modules once those products are both available and cost effective. This modularity also makes Solar Ivy easy to support and update: if one leaf should fail, we can replace it very easily.
More About Grow
GROW appeals to quality of life concerns (environment, health, energy dependence) by providing a product that adheres to the values of environmental responsibility.
Using a life-cycle analysis (LCA), GROW will utilize recycled and reclaimed materials wherever possible and insure that at the end of GROW's lifespan, sustainable methods of recycling and reclamation will be carried out to minimize GROW's environmental and resource footprint.
All iterations of GROW will incorporate an intuitive energy monitoring system allowing both SMIT and end-users to have a one-to-one relationship with their energy output, while enabling the ability to track and fine-tune the performance of GROW's wind and solar energy production.
GROW's unique design incorporates a proprietary, patent-pending combination of photovoltaic and piezoelectric technologies in one system that can adapt to different building typologies, programmatic demands, and regional climates.
SMIT has been pursuing GROW conceptually and technically for over two years, and they have made significant progress in that time. Their two parallel lines of development, GROW and Solar Ivy, represent different stages of technical resolution and conceptual clarity/ideology.