Posts Tagged ‘Grasshopper’

P_Wall (2013)

Date: 2013
Size: 6.1m x 3.6 x 0.3m
Materials: Fiber-Reinforced Thin-Shell Precast Concrete Panels mounted on Steel Frame
Tools: Rhino, Grasshopper, Kangaroo
Location: FRAC Centre, Orleans, France
Fabrication: Concreteworks, Oakland, California

P_Wall (2013), part of on-going research by Matsys into the use of flexible formwork (see earlier projects in the series here, here, here, and here), celebrates the self-organization of material under force. The form emerges through the interaction of the elastic fabric formwork and the liquid slurry of plaster. The designer has control over the locations of the constraints on the fabric which inform the overall form of each panel, but the specific curvature is determined solely by the system finding a state of equilibrium between mass and elasticity.

This iteration of the wall focused on three areas of innovation in reference to past iterations. First, this wall is the first to be constructed out of fiber-reinforced concrete rather than plaster. Rather than solid panels, each panel is only 2cm thick, vastly reducing the weight of each panel and allowing them to be much larger than previous installations. This process entailed the use of five original fabric-cast plaster patterns and subsequent rubber molds for the thin-shell concrete fabrication process.

Second, we were interested in exploring the boundary between modularity and repetition. At what point is something that is modular also repetitious? At what point does a pattern emerge that conflicts with a desired informal landscape? Using a tiling pattern of four panel sizes and five modules rotated in two directions, the pattern is never repeated across a total of thirty-four panels.

Third, using digital simulation models, a rough approximation of the wall was created virtually that allowed many more rounds of design iteration and testing in comparison with earlier projects in the series. Using a spring-network of meshes, the elastic fabric and the mass of the liquid plaster slurry could be modeled within an acceptable range of accuracy based on physical testing.

P_Wall (2013), by Matsys at the FRAC Centre, Orleans, France

P_Wall (2013), by Matsys at the FRAC Centre, Orleans, France

P_Wall (2013), by Matsys at the FRAC Centre, Orleans, France

IMG_9176P_Wall (2013), by Matsys at the FRAC Centre, Orleans, France_clean_1200


Location: Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana
Date: 2013
Materials: Wood Lathe, Stainless Steel Bolts
Tools: Rhino, Grasshopper, Kangaroo
Dimensions: 35′ x 35′ x 7′

Project Description
This project was developed during a fast-paced 3-day workshop with students at Tulane University. Building on the earlier gridshell research conducted during the SmartGeometry 2012 workshop, this grid shell attempted to improve on various aspects of the earlier prototype. In an effort to both increase fabrication speed while decreasing material waste, the parametric model integrated more material feedback and analysis. First, the model would warn the user if the timber member length exceeded the available timber members in order to eliminate the need for splicing members together. Second, the model would produce warnings whenever the maximum bending radius was exceeded, assuring that the surface curvature was producible at full scale. Third, the edge beam members were doubled to increase the overal stiffness of the beam.

Initial Parametric Modeling and Workshop Instructor: Andrew Kudless
Design, Fabrication, and Assembly: Charles Boyne, Jack Waterman, Kyle Graham, Sam Naylor, Sarah Cumming, Dennis Palmadessa, Elizabeth Kovacevic, Lauren Evans









Location: London Design Festival, SCIN Gallery
Date: 2012
Materials: 3D Printed Concrete
Tools: Rhino, Grasshopper, Weaverbird
Dimensions: 20cm x 20cm x 20cm

Project Description
SCIN, a material resource center for designers and architects in London, asked a small group of emerging designers to produce a small cube that represents their approach to design, materiality, and technology for an exhibition that coincides with the London Design Festival. Our submission reflects the reoccurring presence in our work of cellular solids, a transmaterial grouping characterized by high strength to weight ratios. The cube was designed using a network of digital cellular bodies that are first relaxed to produce a more uniform field and then structurally differentiated in relation to their distance to the outside surface. The inner core’s cell edges are extremely thin and fragile yet are protected by the multiple layers of increasing more robust edges closer to the cube boundary. For the exhibition we collaborated with the fabrication consultancy Emerging Objects to create a simple yet lightweight cube that is digitally printed from concrete. This sample of our work embodies our interests and facility with digital craft, material innovation, and structural performance.

Andrew Kudless (design), Emerging Objects (fabrication)

Photo by Emerging Objects

Photo by Emerging Objects

Photo by Emerging Objects

Photo by Emerging Objects

SCIN Cube 04

SCIN Cube 03

Shellstar Pavilion

Date: 2012
Size: 8m x 8m x 3m
Materials: 4mm Translucent Coroplast, Nylon Cable Ties, Steel Foundations, PVC and Steel Reinforcement Arches
Tools: Rhino, Grasshopper, Kangaroo, Python, Lunchbox, Rhinoscript
Location: Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Event: Detour 2012

Shellstar is a lightweight temporary pavilion that maximizes its spatial performance while minimizing structure and material. Commissioned for Detour, an art and design festival in Hong Kong in December 2012, the pavilion was designed to be an iconic gathering place for the festival attendees. Located on an empty lot within the Wan Chai district of Hong Kong, the design emerged out of a desire to create a spatial vortex whereby visitors would feel drawn into the pavilion center and subsequently drawn back out into the larger festival site. Working fully within a parametric modeling environment, the design was quickly developed and iterated with the 6 weeks of design, fabrication, and assembly. The design process can be broken down into 3 processes that were enabled by advanced digital modeling techniques:

The form emerged out of a digital form-finding process based on the classic techniques developed by Antonio Guadi and Frei Otto, among others. Using Grasshopper and the physics engine Kangaroo, the form self-organizes into the catenary-like thrust surfaces that are aligned with the structural vectors and allow for minimal structural depths.

Surface Optimization
The structure is composed of nearly 1500 individual cells that are all slightly non-planar. In reality, the cells must bend slightly to take on the global curvature of the form. However, the cells cannot be too non-planar as this would make it difficult to cut them from flat sheet materials. Using a custom Python script, each cell is optimized so as to eliminate any interior seams and make them as planar as possible, greatly simplifying fabrication.

Fabrication Planning
Using more custom python scripts, each cell was unfolded flat and prepared for fabrication. The cell flanges and labels were automatically added and the cell orientation was analyzed and then rotated to align the flutes of the Coroplast material with the principal bending direction of the surface.

Schematic Design: Andrew Kudless / Matsys
Design Development and Prototyping: Andrew Kudless and Riyad Joucka
Fabrication and Assembly: Art Lab / Ricci Wong, Wong Sifu, Geoff Wong, Wilton Ip, Justin ling, April Lau, Andrew Kudless, Riyad Joucka, Eric Lo, John Thurtle, Garkay Wong, Felice Chap, Kenneth Cheung, Godwin Cheung, Quentin Yiu, Rena Li, Garesa Hao En, Cheryl Ceclia Lui, Huang Xinliu, Horace Cheng
3D Scanning of Built Structure: Topcon HK using a Faro Focus3D Scanner


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo


Photo: Dennis Lo

ShellStar_Diagrams 1

ShellStar_Diagrams 2

ShellStar_Diagrams 3

Shell Star Assembly and Construction from Riyad Joucka on Vimeo.

Photo: 3D Scan of Shellstar: No. of scanned points: 170 Million, No. of Set-ups: 10, Scanner: FARO FOCUS3D, Scanning Time: 1.5 hrs, Data Processing: ~15 minutes, Avg. Pt. Spacing : ~5 mm

Catalyst Hexshell

Date: 2012
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Size: 25′ x 30′ x 12′
Material: 1/8″ Corrugated Cardboard

Description: This project was the result of a 4-day workshop taught with Marc Swackhamer at the University of Minnesota School of Architecture in March 2012. The workshop explored the design and fabrication of shell structures. Inspired by the work of designers such as Guadi, Otto, and Isler, the workshop explored how digital tools could be used in the design, simulation, and fabrication of a contemporary thin-shell structure. The workshop was structured in the following way:

  • Day 1: Parametric Modeling Tutorials and Lecture on Thin-Shell Structures
  • Day 2: Design Competition among student teams
  • Day 3: Fabrication
  • Day 4: Assembly

Credits: The project could not have happened without the amazingly talented and dedicated students at the University of Minnesota who designed and built the structure using the tools that I provided them at the beginning of the workshop. Thanks to all of them:
Namdi Alexander, Daniel Aversa, Tia Bell, Alex Berger, Amy Ennen, Andrew Gardner, John Greene, Kelly Greiner, Artemis Hansen, David Horner, Jonathon Jacobs, Hwan Kim, Jenn McGinnity, Shona Mosites, Kristen Salkas, Stuart Shrimpton, Paul Treml, Katie Umenthum, Pablo Villamil.

Catalyst Hexshell from Andrew Kudless on Vimeo.

Construction drawing used by the team to divide the larger shell into smaller assemblies.

Catalyst Catenary Simulation from Andrew Kudless on Vimeo.

Catalyst Catenary Construction Time Lapse from Andrew Kudless on Vimeo.