Performative Morphology

Winter Semester 2020 / 21 I ITECH Studio
ITECH Module 25991
Master Module 47531,-41,-51 Computerbasiertes Entwerfen 1, 2, 3

ICD: Prof. A. Menges, L. Orozco, H. Svatos-Raznjevic
ITKE: Prof. J. Knippers, A. Krtschil, Prof. J. Stahl, G. Neubauer

Performative Morphology

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2020/21

Current wood building systems are defined by their modular nature. Even though engineered wood processes open up the fabrication of modules of almost unlimited size and shape, the requirements of transportation and ease of on-site assembly greatly limit the complexity and scale of these systems, and the resulting buildings. The anisotropic nature of timber fibres limits most structures to be uni-directional creating mostly rigid grid structures and designs.

Recent developments in computational design methods, material science and fabrication techniques open up new possibilities to overcome these technical limitations. Students will investigate design, engineering and service integration methods for multi-storey timber construction and examine a set of state-of-the-art contemporary case studies.

Based on these initial studies, they will build upon previous research on modular robotic fabrication and assembly processes of timber members and explore their application in interdisciplinary teams at an architectural scale. The aim of the studio will be to explore new typologies and morphologies for a multi-storey structure, and to propose new organisation strategies and design solutions for a more flexible and multi-purpose use of space. 

Outcome of these investigations will be an overview of the topic in the context of the discipline and a set of mid-rise timber proposals with detail development and system service integration. The project offers the opportunity to apply computer-based design, planning, calculation and production methods in an integrated design process at an architectural scale.

The focus will be on the refinement of the proto-architectural timber post and slab building system concept developed in 2019/20. Due to the online-teaching format, the studies will be complemented by smaller ‘in-person’ group sessions. Resources and student work will be hosted in an online file repository and presentations will be held via video conferencing software.

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