subaquatic water spider nests inform ICD/ITKE

for the application of this biological system into a building construction, a process was developed in which an industrial robot is placed within an air supported membrane envelope made of EFTE.

2015-07-16


for the application of this biological system into a building construction, a process was developed in which an industrial robot is placed within an air supported membrane envelope made of EFTE. the initially flexible formwork is gradually stiffened into a self-supporting structure by reinforcing it with carbon fibers from the inside, selectively applied where necessary. the resulting shell forms a habitable pavilion with unique architectural qualities, while at the same time being a highly material-efficient structure.


the initially flexible formwork is gradually stiffened into a self-supporting structure
image © ICD/ITKE university of stuttgart

at the early stages of the construction process, the shell geometry and main fiber bundle locations have been generated by a computational form finding method. this strategy allows the designer to navigate and integrate various structural parameters into performative fiber orientations and densities.

corresponding to this, a prototypical robotic fabrication process was developed for carbon fiber reinforcement on the inside of the flexible membrane. the changing stiffness of the pneumatic formwork and the resulting fluctuations pose a particular challenge to the robot control. in order to adapt to these parameters, the current position and contact force is recorded through an embedded sensor system and integrated into the robot in real time, allowing for constant feedback between the actual production conditions and the digital generation of control codes.

carbon fiber is selectively applied where there are requirements for reinforcement

image © ICD/ITKE university of stuttgart

the ICD/ITKE research pavilion 2014-15 demonstrates the potential of a novel building method through advanced computational design, simulation and manufacturing techniques. the result is not only a particularly material-effective construction, but also an innovative and dynamic architectural example.

interactive-panorama-ICD-ITKE-research-pavilion-2014-15-designboom-08
the shell forms a habitable pavilion with unique architectural qualities
image © ICD/ITKE university of stuttgart



the team examined web construction processes of water spiders
image © ICD/ITKE university of stuttgart

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