30 Items

Cyber-Physical Architecture

  • Henriette Bier, Edwin Vermeer, Arwin Hidding, Krishna Jani

    In order for off-Earth top surface structures built from regolith to protect astronauts from radiation, they need to be several meters thick. Technical University Delft (TUD) proposes to excavate into the ground to create subsurface habitats. By excavating, not only can natural protection from radiation be achieved but also thermal insulation, as the temperature is more stable underground. At the same time, valuable resources can be excavated via in-situ resource utilization (ISRU). In this process, a swarm of autonomous mobile robots excavate the ground in a downwards sloping spiral...

  • Sending humans to the Moon and Mars in the near future requires appropriate infrastructure to support and subsequently sustain human activities. This includes infrastructure to shield from environmental conditions, generate energy, and facilitate mobility and communication. Construction of such infrastructure aims to use in-situ resources and reduce the use of supplies from Earth. The establishment and maintenance of the required infrastructure, equipment, and hardware involves the development of adequate manufacturing techniques, which can enable maximal use of the local resources....

  • This work explores the use of a lunar regolith simulant as feedstock for the direct ink writing additive manufacturing process as an option to enable future lunar in-situ resource utilisation. The feasibility of this approach is demonstrated in a laboratory setting by manufacturing objects with different geometries, using methyl cellulose or sodium alginate as binding agents, water and lunar regolith simulant to create a viscous, printable ‘ink’. A custom three-axis gantry system is used to produce green bodies for subsequent sintering. The sintered objects are characterised using...

  • Sandra Haeuplik-Meusburger, Brand Griffin

    Extra-terrestrial living and working environments are characterized by significant challenges in logistics, environmental demands, engineering, social and psychological issues, to name a few. Everything is limited: physical volume, air, water, power, and medicine … everything, even people, and therefore all is treated as valuable resource. This situation is complicated by the end product being the result of balancing many competing interests. The relationship between humans, space, and technology is forced, as well as a dynamic process. Although mathematical models for complex systems...

  • Lora Ouroumova, Daan Witte, Bart Klootwijk, Esmée Terwindt, Francesca van Marion, Dmitrij Mordasov, Fernando Corte Vargas, Siri Heidweiller, Márton Géczi, Marcel Kempers, Roland Schmehl

    Generating renewable energy on Mars is technologically challenging. Firstly, because, compared to Earth, key energy resources such as solar and wind are weak as a result of very low atmospheric pressure and low solar irradiation. Secondly, because of the harsh environmental conditions, the required high degree of automation, and the exceptional effort and cost involved in transporting material to the planet. Like on Earth, it is crucial to combine complementary resources for an effective renewable energy solution. In this work, we present the results of a design synthesis exercise, a 10...

  • Marina Konstantatou, Miriam Dall’Igna, Samuel Wilkinson, Irene Gallou, Daniel Piker

    Off-Earth structural design has been a subject of fascination and research for decades. Given that the vision of permanent lunar and Martian human presence is materialising, it is an opportune moment to reflect on the future applicability and challenges of off-Earth design. This article investigates contemporary thinking about off-Earth structural design – specifically focused on large-scale infrastructure such as habitats – and assesses it in terms of its sustainability. We suggest that the extra-terrestrial setting, which is characterised by resource, construction, and labour...

  • Mathilde Laot, Belinda Rich, Ina Cheibas, Jia Fu, Jia-Ning Zhu, Vera Popovich

    This study investigates the feasibility of in-situ manufacturing of a functionally graded metallic-regolith. To fabricate the gradient, digital light processing, an additive manufacturing technique, and spark plasma sintering were selected due to their compatibility with metallic-ceramic processing in a space environment. The chosen methods were first assessed for their ability to effectively consolidate regolith alone, before progressing regolith directly onto metallic substrates. Optimized processing conditions based on the sintering temperature, initial powder particle size, and...

  • Henriette Bier, Paul Chan, Advenit Makaya, Angelo Cervone

    Dialogues on Architecture is a series of dialogues between researchers and practitioners, who are embracing the intellectual model of high technology and are involved in its advancement and application in architecture. Dialogue #4 focuses on the technology transfer between on- and off-Earth research and its impact on society, and in particular on industry and education. The dialogue takes place between Henriette Bier (HB), Paul Chan (PC), Advenit Makaya (AM), and Angelo Cervone (AC).

  • Margherita Pillan, Henriette Bier, Keith Green, Milica Pavlovic

    This Spool [CpA] #3 issue poses and attempts to answer questions on the nature of this intimate human-machine bond, encouraging the discussion of its potentials also in terms of individual and social resilience. This issue of Spool, moreover, attempts to explore the design of bio-cyber-physical systems, which requires integration of natural, physical, and virtual architectures with digital systems and social organizations. In designing interactions between the (augmented) human and cyber-physical environments, the collection and use of personal data, the management of a multi-layered...

  • This paper questions the need to introduce into the design methodologies and education, the temporal dimension in architectural design. It questions the need, to introduce methodologies and protocols to be able to define, design, and measure the variables involved in the actuation of spaces.

    While in the history of design, spatial qualities have been central in the search for techniques and tools, temporal qualities have entered, with the advent of the digital revolution, as qualities capable of deforming, compressing, reconfiguring spaces and supporting new ways of living. The...

  • The present work has as its starting point and inspiration in the observation of the habit of staying at the window, mostly performed by older adults, in Lisbon, Portugal. Beginning from this habit, we seek to substantiate, develop, and record speculative and artistic visual experiments that propose a digital reinterpretation of the architectural element window. Such experiments deal with the intertwining of diverse concepts as hybrid architecture, material, digital, virtual, and augmented reality (AR). The experiment, entitled Projected Windows, consists of three different...

  • Milica Pavlovic, Henriette Bier, Margherita Pillan

    Ambient User Experience (Ambient UX) is a conceptual framework providing a strategy for design processes that target cyber-physical spaces. Such design processes interface Wireless Sensor-Actuator Networks (WSAN), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and physically built environments. For managing the complexity of such design processes and ensuring the development of a design facilitating users’ satisfaction, design approaches focused on experience and user activities linked to bio-cyber-physical feedback loops are needed. This paper points out how Ambient UX supports decision-making in a...

  • Immediate Systems are defined as systems that overcome the limitations of remote design by embedding design and implementation in situations of use. This paper extends the theoretical framing of IS and traces three approaches towards IS in architecture: as adhocist mode of action, as acceleration of design transfer and as human-architecture symbiosis. These three approaches consider the same phenomenon from different perspectives respectively, that of the lived experience of the user-designer, that of the designer’s methodology and technology, and that of ecology.

  • Margherita Pillan, Milica Pavlovic, Henriette Bier

    Today’s physical-digital continuum challenges designers and architects to envision architecture as a Bio-Cyber-Physical System that is operating as part of a larger ecosystem while addressing societal challenges with a broader understanding of sustainability in mind.  This paper identifies current conditions, challenges and opportunities, while proposing an intercultural dialog toward achieving a better future. The purpose is to enlighten and explore the threshold where the physical interlaces the domain of immaterial flows of information...

  • Grazia Maria Nicolosi, Henriette Bier, Maria Vogiatzaki

    Dialogs on Architecture is a series of dialogs between researchers and practitioners. who are embracing the intellectual model of high technology and are involved in its advancement and application in architecture. The present dialog focuses on the role of parametric design and cyber-physical systems in architecture. It has been inspired by a lecture given by Henriette Bier at the Italian Institute of Architecture in Catania (2019) and addresses the question of the current paradigm shift in architecture and its impact on the role of the architect and the user. The dialog is led by Grazia...

  • Sang Lee, Henriette Bier

    Apparatus and apparatisation, the focus of the Cyber-Physical Architecture (CpA) issue #2 of SPOOL, refer to an assemblage of various components, tools, and instruments that in combination produce an exponential surplus beyond the linear sum of parts. On the one hand, apparatus can be seen as a collective of means used to perform certain tasks in order to solve a range of problems. It can contain a series of tools and instruments and produce new rationalities that often translate into pervasive technology, such as, for instance, electricity and, today, Information and Communication...

  • Henriette Bier, Keith Green

    Dialogs on Architecture is a series of dialogs between researchers and practitioners who are embracing the intellectual model of high technology and are involved in its advancement and application in architecture. The first dialog focuses on the impact of an intellectual model of high technology on architecture, and takes place between Henriette Bier (HB) and Keith Green (KG).

  • When Michel Foucault introduces the term, dispositif, commonly translated as ‘apparatus’, he uses the architectural example of the Panopticon to illustrate how power is exercised. A building, according to this line of thinking, seemingly has the capacity to exercise control on its occupants. But is this really the case? This paper examines the thinking of Foucault on the subject, and questions to what extent we can conceive of a building as being in and of itself an apparatus. It goes on to explore Foucault’s subsequent reflections on the subject in his interview with Paul Rabinow,...

  • This article summarises a series of experiments at the Architectural Association between 2011 and 2017, which explore the intellectual notion of ‘the architecture machine’ as introduced by Nicholas Negroponte and the Architecture Machine Group at MIT in 1967. The group explored automated computational processes that could assist the process of generating architectural solutions by incorporating much greater levels of complexity at both large and small scales. A central idea to the mission of the Architecture Machine Group was to enable the future inhabitants to participate in the...

  • Manuel Jiménez García, Gilles Retsin, Vicente Soler

    The projects featured in this paper aim to demonstrate the potential of Discrete Robotic Assembly in architecture. Although still in its early stages, this research proves that there is an increase in construction efficiency within a discrete design framework. The research shows how a limited set of assembly possibilities eases the automation of the manufacturing process and leads to a reduction of labour, construction time, and cost. This intrinsic link between discrete design methods and automation hints at a potential shift in the construction industry governed by a new paradigm in...

  • Arwin Hidding, Henriette Bier, Qinyu Wang, Patrick Teuffel, Gennaro Senatore

    Adaptive design strategies have been employed to improve structural performances in terms of load-bearing efficiency and energetic impact as well as to achieve multi-functionality. In this work, we investigate a passive adaptation strategy that employs variable stiffness in robotically printed materials. This paper focuses on the design and robotic fabrication of a chaise longue that can change shape to function as both recliner and chair depending on user requirements. The approach is unique in the way computational design is linked with robotic production. In this context, the design...

  • While architecture and architectural production are increasingly incorporating aspects of non-human agency employing data, information, and knowledge contained within the (worldwide) network connecting electronic devices, the relevant question for the future is not whether robotic building will be implemented, but how robotic systems will be incorporated into building processes and physically built environments in order to serve and improve everyday life.

    This issue of SPOOL aims to answer this question by critically reflecting on the achievements of the last decades in...

  • Design to Robotic Production (D2RP) establishes links between digital design and production in order to achieve informed materialization at an architectural scale. D2RP research is being discussed under the computation, automation and materialization themes, by reference to customizable digital design means, robotic fabrication setups and informed materialization strategies implemented by the Robotic Building group at Hyperbody, TU Delft.

  • Not only recent Science Fiction – e.g., Star Trek Beyond (USA 2016) – celebrates the capacities of robot collectives. Also RoboCup, an annual robot soccer competition, or Harvard University’s Kilobot Project show stunning examples of the central idea behind Swarm Robotics: »[U]sing swarms is the same as getting a bunch of small cheap dumb things to do the same job as an expensive smart thing« (Beni/Wang 1989). This article examines some crucial aspects of the techno-history of a research field which intertwines engineering and biological knowledge and whose applications deal with...

  • Architectured materials are a rising class of materials that bring new possibilities in terms of functional properties, filling the gaps and pushing the limits of Ashby’s materials performance maps [1]. Capitalizing on the concepts of architectured materials, explorations of the potential applications of large-scale 3D printing techniques to civil engineering structures were recently implemented in the DEMOCRITE project.

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