BiotA Lab was a research platform ran led by Professor Marcos Cruz (Director) and Richard Beckett (Co-Director) between 2014-18 at the Bartlett School of Architecture, University College London. The lab explored new modes of simulation and production in architecture crossing knowledge of design, biology and engineering.

During the four years of existence, the BiotA Lab integrated an interdisciplinary group of teachers and researchers, including Dr Chris Leung (design and research engineering), Javier Ruiz (design and computation); Prof Bill Watts (EPSRC-funded research / environmental design and engineering / Max Fordhams); and Dr Sandra Manso (EPSRC-funded research / biology and material science / UPC Barcelona). Biochemical engineering expertise was provided by Dr Brenda Parker (UCL Algae). 

The BiotA Lab was related to the rC7 group in the MArch Architectural Design programme. Regular critics included leading academics such as Prof Frederic Migayrou (B.Pro Bartlett / Centre Pompidou Paris), Dr Martyn Dade-Robertson (Arch ID University of Newcastle), Alisa Andrasek (Wonderlab Bartlett / Biothing), Andrew Porter (Bartlett / Ashton Porter), Dr Yael Reisner (Yael Reisner architects), Manuel Jimenez (m(a)dM design), amongst many others; while thesis supervision is provided by Professor Mario Carpo (Bartlett), Natsai Audrey Chiesa (Central Saint Martins and UCL), Dr Sean Hanna (Bartlett Space Syntax), Oliver Wilton (Bartlett), Professor Marjan Colletti (Bartlett / Rex Lab / mam), and Paul Bavister (APL).

Academic collaborations of the BiotA also involve ArchID Lab at the University of Newcastle UK; C-Biom.A at the Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catalonia / IaaC Spain; and Grymsdyke Farm.

Research 'Computational seeding of bioreceptive materials' was an EPSRC- funded project in the UK which was done in collaboration with industrial partner Laing O’Rourke. It relied on the advisory support of the British Precast Federation; Multiphase Flow and Porous Media Research Group / University of Manchester; green walls specialists Biotecture; and the UCL Centre for Nature-Inspired Engineering, UCL Institute of Making, UCL Algae and B-Made; along with expertise in landscape architecture, urban planning and environmental design.

Selected exhibitions and Publications:

Work produced in the BiotA Lab was regularly exhibited and presented in international events, including Biofabricate (2015/2016/2017), Biosalon (2015/2016), (2014), and Ecobuild in London (2016/2017/2018). Projects have been disseminated in publications such as The Atlantic, Co-Design / Fast Company MagazineArchitectural Review, B.Pro catalogues and the edition on architecture and synthetic biology in Architectural Research Quaterly, Cambridge University Press.