InteliSpark client Smart Walls Contruction, LLC. has been awarded a $749,057 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for a Phase II SBIR project, “telescopic structural flood walls”. The research project is aimed to develop and commercialize an innovative extendable/retractable telescopic structural wall for flood protection.
The development of these telescopic structural flood walls will allow for more resilient infrastructure in flood-prone areas, such as coastal cities and riverine communities. The World Bank has estimated that 50 billion dollars a year is spent worldwide, towards measures to mitigate flooding hazards. Specifically, in the US, 7.9 billion dollars are spent in flood damages and causing 82 fatalities per year, making it to be one of the costliest and deadliest natural hazards. Smart Walls Construction has addressed a challenge faced by city officials and the engineering community by providing a solution of hazard-resilient infrastructure for populations near bodies of water.
Smart Walls Construction’s technology will provide a paradigm shift for the prefabricated concrete industry. Their product will employ a unique concept where structural boxes can be deployed telescopically to withstand forces from external sources, and then return to a retracted position. With the Phase II SBIR grant, they will now be able to focus on assessing the technical features of the walls, based on lead-off customer sites. Smart Walls Constructions will conduct studies on the local and overall structural responses of the walls and the functionality of the mechanical components. They will also create analytical and numerical models, validated by testing on specific components. From there, full-scale models will be tested against storm-surges, hurricane, tsunami, slow-rising waters, and debris forces. Smart Walls Construction will then be able to provide the necessary framework for design guidelines for theses telescopic structural flood walls to be built virtually anywhere flood protection is needed.