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I’m Yu Li, a third-year architecture major at the University of Melbourne. I’m from China, and have been in Australia for four years. When I was young, I was quite interested in paper folding and playing toy bricks, as I can create and build anything I want and they always bring me lots of new and fresh ideas. Just like LEGO, which I still have interest in it now. I think my architecture life is from then on. My interests outside of architecture are travelling, watching movies, and photography, but they all somewhat relevant to architecture, and they will give me inspiration in my designing. My interest in architecture is further increased by studying visual communication and design in high school, and that was my first time of using software in my design, but it was just like the edit tool like Photoshop.


I start using designing software last year in my design studio water, which is Sketch Up and AutoCAD, but don’t have any experience in Rhino and parametric design. In this design studio air, I found that my knowledge of digital software is deficient. I only know the general idea about the parametric architectural design from the magazine I have read before that Digital architecture is used for design complex and irregular shapes by computer modeling and programming, which is also free from the choice of the material. One of the most memorable digital architectural design is the SPACE in London. Studio air could be a good opportunity to experience the digital design by studying and using Rhino and plug-in-grasshopper, which can not only increasing my general knowledge, but also broadening my insight and choice in my future architectural designing life.



PART A. 1: DESIGN FUTURING GUANGZHOU OPERA HOUSE Zaha Hadid Architects 2003-2010 The design of Zaha Hadid’s Guangzhou Opera House is ‘game-changing’ in many ways [1]. As an globally recognise peice of public architecture the Guangzhou Opera House pushes new boundaries in parametric design, construction and urban design. The main concept of the Opera House is based on an unique twin-boulder design, often referred to as ‘pebbles in a stream’ - interpreting the site as being beside the Pearl River. The irregular and folding forms of the Opera House is made possible with cuttingedge parametric design. Through the use of computation design softwares the architects are able to design and draw complex and seemingly freeforming geometries. The adoption of parametric design in this case therefore pushes the possibilities in architectural design. As an influential peice of architecture, such new acrobatic serves as inspiration for other designers and architects [2]. The design of Guangzhou Opera House

also establishes new boundaries in the use of traditional structural systems and materials, in particular steel and concrete. The external form of the building consists of a beautiful and gravity-defying steel mesh, enclosing the asymmetrical auditorium. The innovative use of structural steel mesh offers new possibilities to architectural form-making, offering new ideas to future design and construction.[3] From these fascinating structures, the Guangzhou Opera House also offers new ways for people to interact with public buildings. On the one hand, the Opera House is designed with a dynamic external form (Fig 4), attracting people to visit and examine the building. On the other hand, the building also connects to the outside from the interior, with its sunken lobbies and large expanse of glass brining the city into the building and further connecting and referencing the building to the larger Guangzhou city. [4]

Guangzhou Opera House with its audacious form and function has acted as a catalyst for the city’s cultural development, encouraging the development of a cultural city with more museums and galleries. The Opera House therefore has a positive effect in generating further cultural spaces in Guangzhou. The Opera House’s fascinating form and its positive influence on the new town are some of the reasons why the building is continually being appreciated. Therefore, the Opera House not only signals a new start to Guangzhou’s urban and cultural evolution, it also signposts new possibilities for architectural design and construction.

1 Archdaily (March 01, 2011). Guangzhou Opera House/ Zaha Hadid Architests. 2 Seth Friedermann (March 10, 2011). Vivienne Tam - Fall 2011. 3 Kevin Gerrity (September 7 2011), China as architectural testing fround. < > 4 Dezeen Magzine (February 25 2011), Guangzhou opera house by Zaha Hadid. < >


Fig 1. Guangzhou Opera House

Fig 2. Inside of Opera House

Fig 3. Unfolded layout of scendary steel structure

Fig 4. Unfolded layout of primary steel structure


SOLAR FOREST Neville Mars As Tony Fry mentions in his book ‘Design futuring: sustainability, ethics and new practice’ [5], humanity needs to urgently find a new path for sustainable development before the earth’s resources are depleted and people are forced to migrate or face dire circumstances. Neville Mars’ Solar Forest project is a good example of how design is a key to providing a sustinable path for humanity. Solar Forest is a project aimed at creating energy through solar photovoltaic panels in a parking lot. Disguising the PV cells as public artworks this innovative project proposes new possibilities in the nexus between architecture, public sculpture and sustainable design. A forest of ‘evergreen solar trees’ functions as EV charging stations in a conventional car park. Mars’ proposal has many merits including providing shade for cars as well as a source of clean renewable energy. A set of photovoltaic panels are installed on the leaf of the solar trees, drawing energy directly from the sun. One of the most fascinating features this solar tree proposal is the rotating function of each leaf panel, following the path of

Fig 6. Perspective view of Solar Forest

the sun throughout the day to ensure maximum efficiency [6] This project challenges traditional boundaries of architectural thinking by blurring the boundaries between architectural design, public sculpture, sustainable design and mechanical engineering. Through this project Mars proposes a type of architecture that is reactive and sensitive to the natural environment, while performing other functions of shade provision and energy generation. Solar forest is therefore multifunctional, similar to trees in real life that provide shade as well as a number of other crucial functions such as generating oxygen and ensuring soil stability. The ‘tree’ as a form, is also symbolic of nature, sustainability and green design. As a paper project, Mars’ solar forest proposes the possibility of integrating public sculpture and architecture with the function of energy generation. As a project that embraces environmentally sustainable design, the solar forest also serves as inspiration and catalyst for the transition of society to the use of renewable energy and the wide adoption of electric cars.

Fig 7. Solar tree

5 Fry, Tony (2008). Design Futuring: Sustainability, Ethics and New Practice (Oxford: Berg, pp.1-16) 6 Mike Chino (2009), Solar forest charging system for parking lots.


Fig 5. Solar Forest



Fig 8. Structure of Water Cube


It is important to point out the difference between ‘computation’and ‘computerization’ in terms of desining with computers While ‘computerization’ describes the use of computers as drawing and representational tools, ‘computation’ is the use of computers to extend the ‘human intellect’ by assisting designers ‘explore the unknown’ through computer calculation and analysis [7]. While computerization is more of an aid to the designer, computation is more about parametric calculation and modelling to ‘generate’ alternative design solutions. In the last two decades, computation design and digital fabrication have slowly entered into the practice of architecture. Computation design is now used to explore both formal and structural systems. There are many aspects of the traditional design

process that has been affected by compution design. First, computation allows the designer to visualize designs in 3D as well as to simulate aspects of its performance. Second, computation can enhance the designer’s creativity by offering quick and precise design modelling and data such as building areas, massing, thermal performance, structural performance etc. to allow designers to make better design decisions.[8] The introduction of computation design softwares has revolutionized the creative possibilities of architectural design. At an industry level, such softwares have become a necessary tool for design, as an extension of not only the designer’s thinking but also the communication of design between consultants, designers and the client.

Computation is also used to solve complex geometric problems, previously difficult or even impossible to resolve accurately through hand drawing and physical modelling. Thus in many ways computation has allowed architects to explore complex geometries not only in the design process but also in the production phase, by being able to send the ‘digital design file’ to ‘3D print’ or fabricate [9]. Vaulted brick pavilion in Barcelona and the Water Cube in Beijing are two examples of design computation. By using computation to link the design and production processes, new possibilities can be created in terms of achievable forms and construction systems.

7. Kalay, Yehuda E. (2004). Architecture’s New Media: Principles,Theories, and Methods of Computer-Aided Design (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press), pp. 5-25 8. Designcoding (Febauary 22, 2012), computerization and computation, 9. Kostas, Terzidis (2009), Algorithmic Architecture.


BRICKTOPIA Map13 Architects Bricktopia is a project that demonstrates the power of design “computation”. Traditionally bricks are not used as a folding and undulating surface. What Bricktopia demonstrates is that with computation, traditional materials such as bricks can be used very different and be able to produce structures previously unthinkable. Designed by Map 13 Architects in Barcelona, Spain, Bricktopia is conceived using using 3D modelling software-Rhino and a plugin called ‘Rhino vault’. Based on the traditional construction technique of tile-vault, Rhino was able to test the geometries of the structure, so that only compression stresses will act on the vault. “Unlike the construction that can be seen these days, this project aims to restore the expertise and imagination of the building

hands,” explained by the architects[10]. What this precendent project demonstrates is that through computation, even ageold building materials such as bricks can be used in new and innovative ways. Contrasting the computation approach adopted in Bricktopic to the approach of computertization, it is easy to see that computation is much more powerful in that it can calculate and conceive possible forms and structures beyond human thinking. As designers, we can utilise the strength of computers to push the boundaries of design thinking.

10. Dezeen magzine (November 26, 2013), Vaulted brick pavilion in Barcelona by Map13.


Fig 9. Perspective of Bricktopia

Fig 12. Virtual model of Bricktopia

Fig 13. Virtual model of Bricktopia

Fig 10. Virtual model of Bricktopia

Fig 11. Virtual model of Bricktopia


BEIJING NATIONAL AQUATIC CENTRE PTW Architects & ARUP International 2008 The Beijing National Aquatic Centre, also called “Water Cube”, is designed by PTW Architects and ARUP International. What is unique about the design of the aquatic centre is the steel space frame structure. The structural frame not only holds the the whole building but also holds the ETFE pillows that form the envelope of the building. Such an efficient design is not possible with computation design where the complex structural loads of the building is tested with the ‘seemingly’ organic geometry of the space frame. The computation process allows both the architects and the structural design team to test various spaceframe arrangements before deciding on an structure that was both aesthetically congruent with the idea of ‘bubbles’ and one that works with the

loads of the building [9]. Through this computation process, the design can work a lot more efficiently, with the thick structural skin working to hold up the building, trasfer loads as well as modulate heat, lighting, ventiliation and solar gain through the embedded ETFE pillows. With the adoption of computation deisgn methods in the construction industry these days, built environment professionals like architects and engineers can pursue evermore complex forms and geometries [10].

9. Enrique Walker (August 21, 2009),The Imperativeness of Symbolism in an Age of Computed Efficiency. 10. Kevin R.Conway (2010), Observation on the Nature of computational geometry.


Fig 16. Facade of Water cube

Fig 15. Srructure of Water Cube

Fig 17. Physical model of the structure of Water Cube

Fig 15. Srructure of Water Cube

Fig 14. Beijing Aquatic Centre, external and internal view


Fig 18. Structure of Beijing National Stadium


PART A. 3: COMPOSITION / GENERATION Parametric design is an approach to architectural design that utilises a set of ‘design rules’ to derive, permutate and evolve the design. The ‘set of rules’ are scripted algorithms that establishes a ‘system logic’ of manipulating geometries through mathematical calculation. Through parametric design softwares, designers can explore geometric form making in a systematic manner, altering the parametres of the design to create a variety of geometric solutions. Parametric modelling is a huge leap in the development of design tools, as it can help the designers accurately manipulate geometric forms through altering various design parameters. This was previous unachievable through conventional physical modelling. Parametric modelling also affords the architect with new modes of efficiency and new ways of coordinating the construction process. Through parametric design, the architect can automate the formgenerating process, getting rid of the need for tedious repetitive modelling, the need for complicated calculations, and the possibility of human error.[11] In addition, the use of algorithms and advanced computational techniques to create geometric forms, allows infinite possible outcomes to be generated. Such a new approach to design represents a shift from using CAD softwares as merely representation tools, to design tools that generate rather than communicate the design. ‘Algorithmic’ is a term that describes the use of procedural computer techniques in solving problems in the design process. Such an approach is good for creating and testing complex geometries, quickly, and with small amounts of data to begin with. Designing

with algorithms offers precise prototyping during the design process, as it works with a set of tokens and objects to produce an array of generated outcomes for examination and selection.[12] Within the field of digital design, algorithmic refers specifically to the use of scripting languages. Through scripting, the designer is no longer limited by the user interface and prescribed functions of the software. Instead the designer can control the final form output by directly manipulating the scripted code of the software. Typically algorithmic design would be performed through computer programming languages, such as RhinoScript, Visual Basic and 3dMaxScript.[13] However, one of the shortcomings of the use of parametric design and algorithms is that it can be time-consuming, especially upfront. The designer needs to spend a lot of time familiarising with the script and coding system and the impacts they have on the final design output. If the designer does not understand how to script or code, or the logic of the software, the parametric design process can be very confusing and inefficient. In addition, the endless options that parametric design can produce can be confronting for the designer. Additional processes of isolating and selecting the best solution can also be time consuming.[14] Baoan International Airport and Beijing National Stadium are good examples of parametric form generation and modelling - with different aspects of performative design and fabrication. These examples also demonstrate how buildings no longer have to be ‘boxes’ through the use of parametric methodologies and algorithms.

11 Parametric Modelling: Designing Buildings Intelligently. (2013) 12 Robert A. and Frank C. Keil, eds (1999), Definition of ‘Algorithm’ in Wilson, The MIT Encyclopedia of the Cognitive Sciences (London: MIT Press), pp. 11, 1 13 Neli Leach(February 02 2010), Definitions: Parametric and Algorithmic design, 14 Digital Design over traditional design: Is it an advantage or disadvantage.


BAOAN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT Studio Fuksas 2013 The Baoan International Airport designed by Studio Fuksas Architects in Shenzhen, China, is a good example of parametric design. In this point in time, the Baoan International Airport boasts the largest parametrically generated free-form facade and structure in the world, over 300,000m2 of covered surface.[15] The featured element of this building is the double skin - internal surface and external facade. Over a double-curved surface, there are 60,000 aluminum-glass facade elements laid in the honey comb configuration, which is automatically generated by using complex algorithms. The geometry of the entire structure with more than 350,000 unique steel members is also fabricated through algorithmic calculations.[16] The free-formed surfaces of both the inner and outer walls are created by the software of excel tables to define the position of different types of elements, such as the different angles and

Fig 20. Internal Skin

openings, and then generated over 300,000m2 by keeping the glass planar and generating geometry with the precision of 0.000001m.[17] The fabrication process demonstrates the important feature of parametric modelling, which is its precision and ability to scale up to large architectural forms. In addition, through computation, the design of the Airport uses a parametric data model to control the size and slope of the openings, allowing the designer to control the intended solar gain, views towards the outside and the general aesthetic of the building. Lastly, Baoan International Airport evokes the image of a manta ray, “a fish that breathes and change its own shape, undergoes variations, turns into a bird to celebrate the emotion and fantasy of a flight” [18]. Such a figurative interpretation shows that computation is not only a method to create complex 3D models, but also a means to create an art form.[19]

Fig 21. Internal Skin

15 Phyllis Richardson(December 9, 2013), New airport terminal puts Shenzhen on the global architecture map. 16 Programming architecture. 17 Programming architecture. 18 Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport(Janauary 31, 2014). 19 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15


Fig 19. Top view of Baoan International Airport


BEIJING NATIONAL MUSEUM Herzog & de Meuron 2008 “In architectural practice, computation not only works, but has become necessary, to build the largest projects in the world.”[20] Beijing National Stadium is a significant structure of parametric design, which is also also called “Bird’s Nest” designed by Herzog & de Meuron in 2008. The stadium is the largest steel structure in the world with 26km of unwrapped steel used in the construction. Hence it is necessary to apply parametric modelling and calculation to work out this complex and intricate structure. Given that the web of steel sections twist and turn to form a mesh, the seemingly organic patterning needs to be accurately calculated not only to make sure they work in transferring the structural loads but also are organised in an aesthetic manner to encourage artistic appreciation.[21] By using parametric modelling software, architects working on the National Stadium could quickly generate a num-

Fig 23. Structure of Beijing National Stadium

ber of options for the initial envelope form, within a set of defined parameters - such as geometric constraints and the limitations of construction materials. Followed by the initial creation of the initial conceptual form, designers can further explore and test possibilities by adjusting variable, such as the height of a row of seats to suit the external structural envelope. [22] In addition, the roof of this stadium is designed from a wireframe roof geometry through parametric modelling, and subsequently adding user-feature components to build the box girder and connector element assemblies. The design of the Beijing National Stadium shows that parametric design allows for changes to percolare through the different elements of design and can be updated dynamically when modified. All in all, parametric modelling can offer more opportunities for architects to explore different ways of design, fabrication and construction, and also allows an extension of

Fig 24. Structure of Beijing National Stadium

20 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15 21 Beijing National Stadium, ‘The Bird’s Nest’, China, 22 Beijing national stadium. (August 03, 2013), 23 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15


Fig 22. Perspective view of Beijing National Stadium




Computation and parametric design have created a new field in the world of architecture, and present an alternative approach to design and construction. From the precedent projects introduced above, it is evident that digital design practices is leading a revolution in architectural thinking and design. Parametric design allows a streamlining of the design investigation process, allowing designers to quickly test their design options and combine different design components to generate various simulated results. This new-found ability allows designers to be more creative as they are offered more information to make informed design decisions. Hence, with the continued use of digital techniques, more and more complicated and unimaginable architectural forms will be created in the future.

Throughout these three weeks of researching and learning, I have found that my knowledge of parametric design has deepened significantly. In the beginning I thought parametric design is just about irregular and complex forms but now I have a much clearer picture of the process of design computing and how parametric design changes the way we design and build.

Therefore, by combining with the design brief and the inspiration from all these parametric design precedents, I want to explore the use of parametric algorithms as a method to design a series of sculptures with different and dynamic forms. Following from Mars’ example, I wish to also investigate the integration of solar technology on buildings.In addition, this design will be innovatived by its operational function, just like “open” and “close”, which will working dependent with the path of sun. As it will open with the sun rise to produce energy, and close with the sunset to create a pavilion for people to take shelter form rain. The “double form” with its “open” and “close” mode can also creates two different art images in that area, hence may give a new identity and become a scenery line in the city. The idea is to not only attract people through interesting and incredible forms, but also to educate and remind people to be more sustainable.


Also in adopting architectural computing, I can now understand some of the theory and thinking behind the generation of form and value of creating options. In terms of my past design, I think I can use parametric design methods to introduce more dynamic and fluid forms into my designs which will make my designs more interesting especially from the public and users’ perspectives. With the knowledge learnt from the analysis of successful precedents, I hope I can use digital design softwares to design more creative and fascinating structures in the future.

PART A. 6: APPENDIX - ALGORITHMIC SKETCHES I have selected these algorithmic sketches made from Rhino and Grasshopper plug-in because they exemplify parametric design to me and are interesting forms that can potentially lead onto new ideas. Although these forms are quite simple, they embody some basic algorithmic theories and pick up a few of the arguments I’ve analysed from precedent projects. As a series of different shapes based on the transformation of one major form, this series reflects the infinite possibilities of design iteration. These forms are pretty new and looks very strange, and would be difficult to be imagined by the human mind otherwise. Furthermore, these sketches also present the idea that generative design can also be easy to modify and can quickly show more results from the same 3D model. However, I am also experiencing the shortcomings of the generative design, as there are too many options to choose from, which is hard to make a final decision. Through more practice, I believe I can have a deeper understanding of parametric design and how it can add to my skills as a designer.

First using loft in Grasshopper to create a space then use “bake” to change the different forms by using control point in Rhino. Thus a taxonomy of lofted surface has enerated.


The results by using the command Populate Geometry and Octree.


These two shapes which contain a series of squares and pymarids were created by the command of Construct Doain2, objects, Divide Surface, Deconstruct Vector and Surface Box.

This strip with the contour is made by the command series, offset, extrude and brep.



1 Archdaily (March 01, 2011). Guangzhou Opera House/ Zaha Hadid Architests. http://www.archdaily. com/115949/guangzhou-opera-house-zaha-hadid-architects/ 2 Seth Friedermann (March 10, 2011). Vivienne Tam - Fall 2011. vivienne-tam-fall-2011/ 3 Kevin Gerrity (September 7 2011), China as architectural testing fround. < china-as-architectural-testing-ground/ > 4 Dezeen Magzine (February 25 2011), Guangzhou opera house by Zaha Hadid. < http://www.dezeen. com/2011/02/25/guangzhou-opera-house-by-zaha-hadid-architects/ > 5 Mike Chino (2009), Solar forest charging system for parking lots. 6 Designcoding (Febauary 22, 2012), computerization and computation, 7. Kostas Terzidis (2009), Algorithmic Architecture. Lecture01.pdf 8. Dezeen magzine (November 26, 2013), Vaulted brick pavilion in Barcelona by Map13. http://www.dezeen. com/2013/11/26/bricktopia-vaulted-brick-pavilion-barcelona-map13/ 9. Enrique Walker (August 21, 2009),The Imperativeness of Symbolism in an Age of Computed Efficiency. 10. Kevin R.Conway (2010), Observation on the Nature of computational geometry. 11 Parametric Modelling: Designing Buildings Intelligently. (2013) 12 Robert A. and Frank C. Keil, eds (1999), Definition of ‘Algorithm’ in Wilson, The MIT Encyclopedia of the Cognitive Sciences (London: MIT Press), pp. 11, 1 13 Neli Leach(February 02 2010), Definitions: Parametric and Algorithmic design, http://parasite.usc. edu/?p=443


14 Digital Design over traditional design: Is it an advantage or disadvantage. 15 Phyllis Richardson(December 9, 2013), New airport terminal puts Shenzhen on the global architecture map. 16 Programming architecture. 17 Programming architecture. 18 Shenzhen Bao’an International Airport(Janauary 31, 2014). 19 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15 20 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15 21 Beijing National Stadium, ‘The Bird’s Nest’, China, stadium/ 22 Beijing national stadium. (August 03, 2013), 23 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought’, Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 08-15





Patterning as an ornamental device has had several periods of evolution within the architectural discourse. Moussavi argues in the article ‘The Function of Ornament’ that the meaning of architectural ornamentation is to connect people to culture as well as to allow people to express and communicate their culture [1]. While the link between ornament and culture seems vital to architecture, during the period of Modernism, pursuits for transparency and an international style, rendered ornamentalism obsolete. Adolf Loos called for ornaments to be stripped from buildings deeming ornaments as a thing of “traditional societies”[2] and unnecessary for modern societies. While the aspirations of the Modernists were heroic, what Modernism lacked was an appreciation of the human need to express their individualities and identities. During the post-modern period of architecture, ornamentalism became abstracted to the design of buildings as signage and message. The postmodern approach was effective when the audience of the architecture could ‘read’ the ornament and resonant with the message. However, with globalisation, ornaments that carried meaning in one cultural context was soon found to carry little meaning in another context. With the advent of digital architecture and parametric design, architectural ornamentalism has found new meaning in both global and local contexts. What the computerisation of architectural design has been able to achieve is to abstract architectural ornaments into patterns of intrigue and excitement that echo across many different cultural contexts. Many of these

patterns derive not from a singular cultural context but from nature, with heavy abstraction. The adoption of nature as a common visual language allows many different cultures of people to freely interpret the ornament/pattern, deriving meaning within their own set of experiences and values. Examples of this approach to ornament can be seen in Herzog & De Meuron’s de Young Museum in San Francisco and Hitoshi Abe’s Aoba Tei restaurant in Sendai Tokyo, both taking the image of tree canopy in their designs of perforated surface/screen patterning.

Fig 2 De Young Museum Facade

Fig 3 Aoba Tei

1 Moussavi, Farshid and Michael Kubo, eds (2006). The Function of Ornament (Barcelona: Actar), pp. 5-14 2 Moussavi, Farshid and Michael Kubo, eds (2006). The Function of Ornament (Barcelona: Actar), pp. 7


B.1 RESEARCH FIELD DESIGN IMPLICATIONS & OPPORTUNITIES Moussavi outlines useful classifications in which contemporary architectural ornaments can be understood. Classification 1: “Depth” - from form, structure, screen to surface treatments. Classification 2: “Material” - from most intrinsic like program, to the most extrinsic, like branding. Classification 3: Affect – the resultant emotional impact on a user from the interplay between depth and material or the ornament. Adopting Moussavi’s ornament classifications, we can examine the use of architectural ornament in a number of contemporary buildings to locate opportunities for design.[Table 1] From the table on the right, it is interesting to see how ornamental patterning can vary in its uses. While some architects have used patterning merely as a screened decoration, others have adopted patterning in ‘deeper’ ways – becoming surface, structure, form and even the overall branding of the building. All these aspects of design application can be considered in our groups’ approach to patterning as a material system. Another key aspect of contemporary architectural ornamentation is its functional performance. Through computerisation, architects can now have a high degree of control over complex geometries. Such geometries are able to carry both ornamental and functional effects. In the case of the de Young Museum, the external copper screening is an abstraction of the trees within its setting. However, beyond the aesthetics, the screen also act as a rain screen to hide an integrated ventilation system on the façade as well as perform as a sun screen to moderate sunlight into the gallery spaces [3].

In the case of the Spanish Pavilion designed by Foreign Office Architects, the envelope patterning also integrate the fenestration design for light and ventilation. Patterns have also been used as structural systems. Herzog & de Meuron’s Beijing National Stadium and Ito & Balmond’s Serpentine Pavilion both used the ornamental patterning as the structural system, form and envelope of the building, thus serving many aesthetic and functional purposes.

Fig 4 Beijing National Stadium facade

Fig 5 Balmond’s Sepentine Pavilion

3 Kolarevic, Branko and Kevin R. Klinger, eds (2008). Manufacturing Material Effects: Rethinking Design and Making in Architecture (New York; London: Routledge), pp. 6–24


Architect Hitoshi Abe Herzog de Meuron Herzog de Meuron Toyo Ito & Ceceil Balmond OMA Ashton Raggart McDouggal Foreign Office Architects Office of Kumiko Inui UNStudio Studio Gang Gramazio + Kohler Archi Union Architects Office dA Herzog de Meuron

Project Aoba Tei de Young Museum National Beijing Stadium Serpentine Pavilion McCormick Tribune Campus Centre Portrait building Spanish Pavillion Dior Ginza Galleria Center City Aqua Tower Gantenbein Vineyard facade AU Office and Exhibition Space Tongxian Gatehouse 40 Bond

Use of patterned ornament Suface, form Screen Structure, form Structure, form, screen Screen, image, brand Image, brand Screen, surface, brand Screen, brand Form, screen, surface, brand Form, brand, surface Surface, image, screen, brand Surface, screen Surface, form Surface

Table 1

B.1 RESEARCH FIELD DESIGN & FABRICATION The advent of digital softwares for parametric and computation design are arguably the most important evolution, in terms of design tools, to allow the fabrication of complex geometry ornaments [4]. In Herzog & de Meuron’s office, a specialist team of digital technology experts contribute to both the design and fabrication of building concepts and components. The importance of such an expert group is to the extent that each project has its own generative script, software tool or design data management system. The connection between design, digital modelling and fabrication is explored in the table below.[Table 2]

From the examples above, several design/fabrication techniques can be observed. 1. Pixelation – where an image is abstracted into circles to be drilled to form screens. 2. Lattice – where a geometric pattern is abstracted into a 3D lattice structure. 3. Unit assembly – where a generic assembly unit such as a brick or tile is assembled over a large surface, with variations in assembly to create openings and screening. Some of these key techniques will be explored later in our group’s design explorations to carry our design language into fabrication.

4 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Realising the Architectural Intent: Computation at Herzog & De Meuron’. Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 56-


Project Aoba Tei de Young Museum National Beijing Staudium Serpentine Pavilion Spanish Pavilion Gantenbein Vineyard

Design Tree canopy abstracted into circular patterns Tree canopy abstracted into circular patterns Traditional Chinese screen abstracted Rotated square pattern

Fabrication Circular patterns CNC drilled, in panels, fitted onsite by ship-building professionals Circular patterns drilled and embossed in panels Digitally modelled, steel sections prefabricated and assembled onsite Digitally modelled, steel frame assembled onsite Spanish culture abstracted Ceramic tiles prefabricated and assembled onsite on a structural frame into different coloured hexagons Basket of grapes Robotic production laying bricks with precise angles to allow openings and visual effects

Table 2

Fig 7 AU Office and Exihibition Centre


Fig 8 Dior Ginza Facade

Fig 6 Aqua Tower Model


Fig 9 Facade of De Young Museum



In this week’s case study 1.0, we decided to analyze De Young Museum as our particular project. The following matrices have shown some attempts to move away from the original definition, and create our group’s own design. By understanding and learning the workings of the grasshopper definition in its components, we tried to demonstrate maximum innovative variation and potential possibilities for patterning. The patterning material system of Herzog & De Meuron’s De Young Museum in San Francisco can be a good for our project. As it uses the techniques of pixilation and unit assembly to create multiple aesthetic and functional purposes - the copper screen, which is not only a decorative architectural element, but also a rain screen, sun shade and a facade screen that hides the external mechanical ventilation system.

Fig 10 De Young Museum Facade pattern

The first step of experimenting with the provided Grasshopper definition involved simply changing and modifying each parameter to understand what each component was responsible for. Based on our design criteria of pixelation and aesthetics, our second step involved adopting different images and inputing various geometries to test the possibilities of new and exciting patterning systems. Lastly, we tried to use the patterns generated to create related 3D forms. We achieved this by adopting a unit of the pattern and applying it over a 3D free form surface to create patterned surfaces that represent a combination of the two techniques. Below are the four species of experimentation from the provided Grasshopper definition, from each specie we have selected a successful iteration based on our selection criteria.

Fig 11 Facade of De Young Museum



PART B.2: CASE STUDY 1.0 SPECIE 1: Specie 1 was generated by using a completely different Grasshopper definition. We wrote the definition to produce a series of patterned and dynamic surface forms.



Specie 2 has developed 9 different patterns based on the provided De Young Museum Grasshopper definition. These interesting 3D patterns are mainly lofted by 2 layers of 2D planes, the differences are achieved by inputting different images and geometries, and changing the radiuses.



Specie 3 starts to move away from the original definition, and tries to create some dynamic effect by changing the arrangements of the series of individual patterns into new forms. These 9 patterns also involve the use of freeform surfaces and various radiuses for some parameters.



Specie 4 has almost evolved beyound the provided Grasshopper definition. These 3D patterns are created by using a freeform surface, then attached to 2D patterns to create a combined effect. Also by using the technique of pixelation, we selected different areas of each iteration for surface enlargement. The purpose of enlarging specific areas of iterations was to allow the poteneial for the surfaces to function as solar energy collectors.


PART B.2: CASE STUDY 1.0 SELECTION CRITERIA Given that the pattens that generated are abstract forms, the selection criteria we have come up with is based on the potential of the selected iterations to perform a series of aesthetics and functional roles. Below are a list of eight selection criteria: 1. Attractive form - the iteration has a fascinating and engaging shape and pattern, demonstrate the potential to be developed into an interesting object that would attract public attention 2. Multifunctional - the geometry of the iterations has the potential to be developed to perform several functional roles, eg. Energy generation, responding to the elements such as wind, able to incite movement, and engage visitors through the senses such as sight, sound and touch. 3. Modulation and Fabrication - the geometry of the iteration demonstrates the potential to be modulated for unit assembly. The units also having the potential for easy fabrication. Both the geometry of the overall form and unit would have an inherent logic for construction. 4. Responding to site - the selected iteration has to demonstrate potential to respond well to the competition site in Copenhagen, the shape of the iteration should have features that can resonate with the qualities of the site.


4 MOST SUCCESSFUL ITERATIONS Based on our selection criteria, we considered these four highlighted outcomes to be the most successful, as they all have interesting and attractive patterns. These selected iterations are also formed by s aeries of individual parts, which could be easy for fabrication. They also celebrate the technique of pixelation, which is the main technique chosen for our formal experimentations.

DESIGN POTENTIAL 1. The different surface areas of the selected iterations can have the potential to generate or create green energy. 2. The clustering of repeated forms have the potential to create artificial landscapes such as a earth mound. These landscapes can be use by visitors for recreation and exploration like walking through the Grand Canyon. 3. The tubular and conical shapes in Outcomes A and B can be used as a surface structure to capture wind energy. 4. The hemisphere and pattern screen shapes in Outcome C and D can be used as surfaces to capture solar energy.


PART B.3: CASE STUDY 2.0 MOMA/PS1 REEF IwamotoScott 2007 The project we selected was the REEF designed by IwamotoScott Architects in the United States for the MoMA/PS1 Urban Beach Installation. The most significant feature of this design is the patterned mesh roof, hung from cable trusses like a tent, creating almost internal spatial qualities beneath. Concept The design intent was to create an underwater landscape. The floating mesh fabric roof was interpreted as “anemone clouds”, a gravelled floor represented a ‘seabed’ with reef mounds that dotted the sea floor. The anemone clouds created a series of sheltered, semisheltered and unsheltered spaces, producing a variety of light and shadow qualities in a relatively small installation space.[5] The design reacted against the movement of visitors within the installation site, capturing the sense of fluidity, intrigue, pause and openness. Fabrication The roof surface is made up of 1,200 uniquely shaped fabric mesh modules. The individual fabric modules are designed to move with the wind, and were hung at different heights to create a variety of shadow patterns. Moving with the wind, the ‘anemone clouds’ swing and sway, moving to mimic the natural flows of water. Parametric modelling was employed in this project to design and organise the mesh elements for fabrication. For the roof, 2D template patterns were produced, folded and connected through overlapping flaps and sewn to create a 3D strung fabric mesh. The reef mounds were also fabricated through parametric modelling methods,

created through combining uniquely shaped pieces in a continuous curved surface to produce patterned textures, much like the coral reef.[6] Evaluation All in all, the REEF project is an successful example of the patterning material system in parametric modelling. In this project, patterning is utilised in the fabrication of both the fabric roof and reef mounds by creating small module pieces that can be repeated and connected systematically to make a larger whole. This construction system has the advantage of producing organic shapes, as individual modules can be attached to follow a larger and more organic geometry. The fabric mesh roof is particularly successful, being light weight, moderating sun and shade, as well as being able to create different levels of sheltered spaces for the visitors to enjoy.

Fig 12 MoMA/PS1 Reef

5. IwamotoScott Architecture. MoMO/PS1 REEF. 6. IwamotoScott Architecture. MoMO/PS1 REEF.


Fig 13 MoMA/PS1 Reef

Fig 14 MoMA/PS1 Reef

Fig 15 MoMA/PS1 Reef


PART B.3: CASE STUDY 2.0 REVERSE ENGINEERING USING GRASSHOPPER Step 01 First step we have developed a base surface and generated a grid system on the surface, and then lofted two curves to form a free form suface.


Step 02 Second step we defined the center of each grid cell.

Step 03 Third step is to scale each of the grid cell relative to the centre of each cell.

Step 04 Fourth step is to project the scaled grid cells to the free form surface, and then loft the square grid grid cells and the projected cells.

Wrong way of defining the center of each grid cell that result in overlapping cells while they are scaled in the following stages.


PART B.3: CASE STUDY 2.0 Step 1 Base surface

Step 3 Flip the corners of the

Step 2 Define grid cells

Step 4 Define the center of each grid cells


3 1


Step 5 Scale the flipped cells

Step 6 Project the scaled cells

Step 7 Loft the square grid cells and projected cells








Through the reverse-engineering process, we have created an outcome that has both similities and differences tothe original fabricate mesh roof of the MoMO/PS1 project. For example, MoMO/PS1’s roof is hung from concrete walls, therefore its natural sagging geometry creates an asymmetrical double curvature form. Our result is curved only in one dimension, and therefore looks less organic and fluid. Also our “tubes” are longer in the middle, creating more of a object-looking form than a surface. However, we have recreated the same perforated effect and ocular sense of view through the tubed surface. Going forward, we would like to explore more the idea of tubed surfaces and landscapes, altering the characteristics of each tube to create both a sense of object and surface.



Front View

Right View



Base Surface

Iteration 1

Iteration 2

Iteration 3


Species 2

Species 3

Species 4

Species 5



Base Surface

Iteration 1

Iteration 2

Iteration 3


Species 7

Species 8

Species 9

Species 10



FINAL SELECTION Based on our selection criteria (attractive form, multifunctional, modulation and frabrication, responding to site), we have selected this iteration as the most successful out of the entire matrix. DESIGN POTENTIAL The potential of this final selected specie is that the radiating tubes can be designed into channels for wind energy. The radial organisation can also create an interesting 3D pattern effect, exenting the 2D circular patterns that we first started out with on a plane into a 3D sculture form.


PART B.5: TECHNIQUES: PROTOTYPE PROTOTYPES We started by first prototyping in physical model different kinds of tube arrangements.

We thought that the tubes could be made of metal or glass and be supported on a frame. Air can pass through the tubest to make sounds like an organ instrument (Figure 17).

Fig 17 Organ


PART B.5: TECHNIQUES: PROTOTYPE Later we built another prototype based on the idea of tubes supported on a pole that can spin with the wind much like a wind turbine (Figure 18).

Fig 18 Wind Turbine

SELETION CRITERIA The main selection criteria for the final prototype were: 1 the scheme celebrates wind as a characteristic of Copenhagenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s environment 2 the scheme allows the generation of clean renewable energy through wind 3 the scheme is dynamic and moves to attract visitorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s attention 4 the scheme provides an enjoyable environment for visitors From these selection criteria, we have selected the second prototype as we believe it will lend better to a park landscape for the city of copenhagen.


PART B.6: TECHNIQUES PROPOSAL RESPONDING TO THE BRIEF Our final proposal was a tree like structure that would stand in the Copenhagen site. The tubes would generate wind energy as wind moves through it.

Spring-like wind catches can go inside the tube

Min 3m

EVALUATION & TECHNIQUE We believe this technique is very successful as it produces an attractive wind sculpture that not only looks like a tree in the park landscape, it also symbolises Copenhangen as a windy capital.




PART B.7: LEARNING OBJECTIVES & OUTCOMES The critique from our interm presentation was valuable, in that it provided us with a direction forward in terms of developing our design. One of the critiques was that our straight tubes cannot respond well to the site. Taking on board this comment, we thought about the funnel-like form instead of the straight tube form, as it can increase the flow of the wind through the tube, hence achieving the purpose of energy generation. Over this short period of time, I have learned so much about parametric modelling and gained a deep understanding of computation design. My skills of Rhino and Grasshopper has also increased through constant practice. I’m now much more confident in designing with parametric modelling softwares.

PART B.8: ALGORITHMIC SKETCHES I selected these two algorithmic sketches made from Rhino and Grasshopper plug-in because they both have interesting and complex forms which are difficuly to create by human mind. By using the technique of parametric modeling, we can gain inspiration from the digital modelling, enhancing our own creativity. Digital modelling can also allow rapid prototyping and fabrication, which offers the designer an additional to design in both computer and 3D physical modelling.


I have also learnt to use computation design as a tool for design development. Using softwares like Rhino and Grasshopper, I’m now able to start with a design idea and explore the idea’s design potential through generative processes. The softwares has therefore become my “design partner”, offering me options on forms and shapes to select and develop further. Using these softwares, I can explore the unclear, the ill-defined, the impossible, the imaginative boundaries of my design thinking. The final selected outcomes are also through computation design embedded with the logic of analysis and fabrication. Therefore, parametric modeling technique is a smart tool that extends our intellect and increases our ability to apply logic and reason for calculation and estimation.



NOTES 1 Moussavi, Farshid and Michael Kubo, eds (2006). The Function of Ornament (Barcelona: Actar), pp. 5-14 2 Moussavi, Farshid and Michael Kubo, eds (2006). The Function of Ornament (Barcelona: Actar), pp. 7 3 Kolarevic, Branko and Kevin R. Klinger, eds (2008). Manufacturing Material Effects: Rethinking Design and Making in Architecture (New York; London: Routledge), pp. 6–24 4 Peters, Brady. (2013) ‘Realising the Architectural Intent: Computation at Herzog & De Meuron’. Architectural Design, 83, 2, pp. 56-61 5. IwamotoScott Architecture. MoMO/PS1 REEF. 6. IwamotoScott Architecture. MoMO/PS1 REEF.

IMAGES Fig.1 Aqua Tower Hotel and Residential in Chicago by Studio Gang. 29 April 2014 Fig.2 De Young Museum facade pattern. 29 April 2014 Fig.3 Restaurant ‘Aoba Tei’. 29 April 2014 Fig.4 Facade of Beijing National Stadium.,-beijing-photo-12260.htm 29 April 2014 Fig.5 Balmond’s Serpentine Pavilion. 29 April 2014 Fig.6 Aqua Tower Model. feat_02a.htm 29 April 2014 Fig.7 Facade of AU Office and Exhibition Centre. Architects%20Inc 29 April 2014


IMAGES Fig.8 Facade of Dior Ginza. 29 April 2014 Fig.9 Facade of De Young Museum. 1 May 2014 Fig.10 De Young Museum facade pattern. 29 April 2014 Fig.11 Facade of De Yound Museum. 1 May 2014 Fig.12 MoMA/PS1 Reef. 30 April 2014 Fig.13 Top view of MoMA/PS1 Reef. 30 April 2014 Fig.14 MoMA/PS1 Reef. 30 April 2014 Fig.15 Inside of MoMA/PS1 Reef. 30 April 2014 Fig.16 Tube-sponge. 1 May 2014 Fig.17 Organ. 1 May 2014 Fig.18 Wind Turbine. 1 May 2014 Fig.19 Traditional wind mill. 1 May 2014 Fig.20 Telescope. 1 May 2014




C.1 DESIGN CONCEPT INTERIM PRESENTATION FEEDBACK The main critiques from our interm presentation were: 1. The straight tubes from our design would not respond well to the site 2. There were questions about the energy generation capacity of the design project 3. We need to consider more the constructability and structure of our design 4. We need to think about the human interaction aspects of the project 5. We need to think about the materiality of the project. In responding to the critiques, we decided to redesign our project, so that it could perform better. We kept the idea of the tubes, but instead of using it for wind energy generation, we decided to use the tubes as solar energy collectors. Our new concept was a wall surface with many tubes, predominately facing south. The tubes would be made of environmentally friendly resin material with electricity generating nano particles mixed into the resin (please see later sections for details on material selection). The tubes would therefore be transparent in appearance, but when exposed to direct sunlight, the tubes would reflect and refract the sun light, glowing itself, much like a lamp. The tubes would therefore generate electricity from both the sunlight and light reflected off other surrounding tubes. In thinking about the construction and structure of the design, we changed our design from a supporting steel column to a supporting concrete wall. Each of the tubes would be fixed to the concrete wall via metal brackets. Within the thickness of the concrete wall, there would be space for solar power generation equipment, such as batteries and connecting switchboards. The energy

generated off the tubes will be stored in the batteries on site, and will be used to light up the tubes at night to create a spectacular light installation/artwork. The energy that’s left over will be sold back to the grid. The main idea of the project was to encourage human interaction, especially getting the attentin of young people as the installation would have education value as both an renewable energy generator and a public artwork. By lighting up the design project at nignt, using the solar enery collector during the day, the project demonstrates full sustainability. The installation will also look spectacular at night by the sea, especially from the opposite side of the water where the “little mermaid” statue is situated.

Fig 1 New design based on the sun


C.1 DESIGN CONCEPT DEVELOPMENT OF PARAMETRIC TECHNIQUE Our main idea for the parametric technique was to use solar simulation for the particular site to inform the size and length of the solar tubes.

The areas where there was maximum solar gain, the corresponding tubes will be designed at 3 m. The areas where there was least solar gain, the tubes would be designed at 20 cm. The Grasshopper definition would work out the tube lengths for the gradient differences in solar gain in between the extreme values. Each of the tubes would penetrate the concrete wall, so that light will also be seen on the back of the wall.

Begining with a curved wall based on the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;solar arcâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;, our idea was to calculate using a grasshopper plug-in, the solar radiation on different areas of the curved wall. The South facing areas of the wall would have more solar radiation as compared to the lower angle areas on the eastern and western sides of the wall.

Where the large curved walls intersected with walk ways across the site, an opening will be created in the walls, so that people can get up and close to the walls and tubes.


The layout of the walkways across the site is informed by a superimposition of a part of the Copenhagen streetscape. The main spine of the walkway is a famous bike lane in Copenhagen city, which is Roskildevej. Therefore ideas of sustainability are transplanted onto the site through borrowing the pattern of the bike lanes.


C.1 DESIGN CONCEPT DIAGRAM OF TECHNIQUE & CONSTRUCTION PROCESS Initial Geometry It starts with three rail curves and one section profile curve to generate the facade surfaces.” The rails curves are manually drawn in Rhino, in a way that they surround the intersections of the road and that the road penetrates the surfaces.” In addition, the rail curves are oriented towards south for the maximum exposure to the sun.”

The section profile curve is oriented and aligned at the end point of the Rail Curve 01, and the initial facade surface is created by Sweep 1Rail component with these two curves.


With the initial surface, two other rail curves and section profile curves are extracted. This step is done to get the rail curve on the top of the surface.

Font/Rear Surfaces

With the middle point generated from the line which connects the end points of the first rail curve, the bottom rail curve is offset by 1500, which will define the thickness of the bottom part of the wall.â&#x20AC;?


By connecting the end points of the facade rail curves, a planar quadrilateral surface is created as a reference plane for a new section profile curve.

A new section profile cure is created and projected on the plane from the previous step.


By using ‘Sweep 2 Rail’ component, a polysurface is created, and from that surface two new surfaces are extracted as the reference surfaces for the surface-subdivision procession the next step.

Concrete wall brep

A grasshopper plug-in called ‘LunchBox’ provides very useful components for generating various types of geometries. LunchBox can be download from http://www.” By using ‘Quad Panels’ component of LunchBox, a series of quadrangular panels are generated on the front and rear facade surfaces.”


In order to get the entrance areas on the facade surface, a brep of the road is generated for the intersecting calculation.

An intersection calculation is processed with the two facade surfaces and the road brep in order to cull those panels that are intersecting with the road brep.


Now, it is the last step to create the wall geometry. With the two polylines extracted from the previous surfaces are then connected each other by â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Loftâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; to create a polysurface, which will then be joined with the two front and rear facade surfaces.


Solar Radiation simulation

Now that we have the wall brep and the sub-panels on the front facade surface, it is time to run a solar radiation simulation on those sub-panels. By using LadyBug, a free environmental plug-in for Grasshopper, we can calculate radiation on the facade surfaces. LadyBug can be downloaded fromâ&#x20AC;? The simulation setup follows the basic yearly weather data with the analysis period from 5am till 23pm throughout the year. 5am is the earliest sunrise time and 23pm is the latest sunset time of the year.


The test geometries for the simulation are set to be 200x200 rectangles aligned on the facade surface. From the solar simulation plug-in, we can get the colour-coded resulting image and the radiation values. The solar radiation values, which approximately range from 540 to 1135kWh/m2, are then remapped into a new numeric domain from 200 to 2000 so that those remapped values define the lengths of the transparent tubes which will be installed in the wall.â&#x20AC;?

Final Brep

Before creating any tubes on the wall, the remapped values are used to define the lengths of the lines along the surface normals of the facade surface. Each line has the different length based on the different solar radiation value from the simulation. The higher the solar radiation value is, the longer the line is. Therefore, more areas of the final transparent tubes will be exposed to the sun to collect more sunlight and pass it through the tube. In addition, the tubes are penetrating the wall by 200mm in order to pass the sunlight on through the other ends of the tubes.â&#x20AC;?



On both ends of the normal lines, rectangles with two different sizes are created and then lofted together to create the tube breps. Then, with â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Solid Differentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;, those tubes create holes in the wall as the final stage of the algorithm.






C.2 TECTONIC ELEMENTS CORE CONSTRUCTION ELEMENT The core construction element of the design is a resin tube supported by a metal bracket to a concrete structure.

Precast Concrete Wall Gasket Metal Frame Bolts

Resin Tube

Given that the tubes are of different lengths, after testing the prototypes, we have decided to alter the lengths of the metal brackets in order to support the different cantilevers.

The diagrams above shows how the resin tubes penetrate the concrete, supported on one side by a metal bracket with bolts and sealed to the concrete on the other side by a gasket. Depending on the solar radiantion values on different parts of the wall, the tubes will be of different lengths. Below is an image of a prototype.


We also tested different sizes of â&#x20AC;&#x153;tectonic unitsâ&#x20AC;?. In the end we settled for the 0.8*0.8m interval because it had enough tubes to be efficient in terms of energy generation but wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t too dense, so the tubes will be buried.

1m*1.5m intervals

0.8m*0.8m intervals

0.5m*0.5m intervals

0.3m*0.3m intervals

0.2m*0.2m intervals



Views through the resin material

The resin material we selected for this project is ecologically friendly and organic. the resin are made from vegetable oils and have low levels of volatile organic componds (more information on the eco resin material can be found on

NANO SOLAR PARTICLES Mixed inside the resin were nano solar particles that generat solar energy. These particles converted sunlight into electricity through a chemical process (More information can be found on: Paint solar energy: www. Transparent nano solar particles:

CONCRETE The concrete selected for the project is also a ecologically-friendly conrete material (more information on Earth Friendly Conrete

capabilities/efc/). Earth friendly concrete is made of innovative geopolymers that reduces the emission of greenhouse gas during the construction process. The selection of these ecological friendly material further adds to the value of the project as a symbol for green energy and sustainable design.


C.3. FINAL MODEL DIAGRAMS OF TECHNIQUE & CONSTRUCTION PROCESS Laser cutting template for the transparent tubes. Each of the tubes are labeled in numbers to correspond to the different slot holes in the 3D print model. 3D print model. Due to the limitation on size of the 3D printing (17cm*17cm*17cm), I have decided to build a section of the final model, this final model includes a typical opening where the roads will penetrate the walls. The image shows corresponding numbers for the laser cut tubes.

Using perspex as the model material to represent the tubes.

3D printed models with the slot holes for the transparent tubes.


Documenting the process of assembly there were some difficulties experienced with the 3D print model as the hole were not smooth. Some of the holes were also too smaller due to the angle of the 3D print. Therefore, in order to slot the tubes in, I had to sand the holes big enough so the tubes could slide in better.


C.3. FINAL MODEL PHOTOGRAPHS OF FINAL MODEL * due to 3D printing size limitation I decided to build a part section of the model



1:100 Final model of typical wall section 91













C.4 ADDITIONAL LAGI BRIEF REQUIREMENTS STATEMENT “SOLAR ARCS OF COPENHAGEN” Description: This project proposes to celebrate and capture the power of the sun. Stemming from ancient culture where people used to read time on the ground through shadows of sundials, this project proposes three arced shaped walls that track the movement of the sun in the sky. The idea of the project is to have a landscape artwork that captures the sun during the day, stores the solar energy and uses it at night through lighting up hundreds of transparent tubes-like lamps. The artwork is designed to be engaging for both the young and old with areas of the installation where visitors can directly touch and feel the light emitting tubes. The installation works both through the day and at night, activating the site as an all-day public space that is both transformative and educational. The idea of lighting up the walls is also to take advantage of the sea side location where the reflection of the light can be captured on the water surface, serving as a beautiful night feature from across the water where the internationally famous ‘Little Mermaid’ statue lies.

Estimation of annual kWh: There are three solar walls on the site. Each wall is 5m by 45m, with the majority of the face of the wall pointing South. This gives a total of 675m2 of area to generate electricity. Through this landscape installation it is expected that 2,700kWh of solar energy can be generated per day which equates to approximately 985,500kWh of solar energy per year. Dimensions and primary materials of the design: As mentioned, each wall is approximately 5m in height and 45m in length (although the walls are curved both ways which will slightly increase the overall surface area of the installation). The walls are made of ‘Earth friendly concrete’ with innovative geopolymer binder technology which unlike conventional concrete is able to achieve low carbon emissions in the construction process. The solar tubes are made of ‘Green’ resin with nano solar particles.

Environmental impact: Overall, the project has a very positive environmental Technology: impact. The construction materials are all made of The technology adopted in the project is the most innovative environmentally friendly material and on top advanced for solar power technology. Each of the of that the project generates a large amount of solar ‘solar tubes’ are made of environmentally friendly resin, energy in the year. The electricity generated is used mixed with ‘nano solar particles’, able to draw energy to create a night park out of the site and also feed into from sunlight that passes through the tubes. As the the grid to contribute towards the power generation for particles within the tubes, turn sunlight into electricity, Copenhagen. the power generated through the day is stored in large batteries within the concrete wall itself. The excess electricity that is not used up at night is fed back to the grid to power the rest of the neighbourhood.



Objective 1. I have learnt to “interrogate a brief” by breaking down the components that contribute towards its signature or success. This is demonstrated in our exploration of both solar and wind technologies as well as very different forms of form design to harness the energy.

Objective 6. I have developed the capacity to analyse projects both conceptually and technically. This is evidence especially in Part B and C where I investigated different construction details and how those details supported the design concept of the project.

Objective 2. I have developed the “ability to generate a variety of design possibilities for a given situation”. This is most evident in our iteration and testing explorations in the matrices that we produced.

Objective 7. I have gained a deep understanding of computational geometry, data structures and types of programming. This has opened a whole new world for me in terms of computation design and how I can use such approaches in future design projects.

Objective 3. I have developed “skills in various threedimensional media” especially using Grasshopper and Rhino for the first time and using laser cutter and 3D printing technology for the first time. Objective 4. I have developed “an understanding of relationships between architecture and air” through investigating our design in both the physical (hand building a model) and ethereal (digital world of modelling).

Objective 8. I have began to developed my own style of computational techniques based on a few techniques I have come to be familar with such as calculating solar radiation on panel surfaces and reacting to the sun to alter the design.

Objective 5. I have developed “the ability to make a case for proposals” especially in Part A where I started by looking at contemporary architectural theory and how I developed upon the theory to produce a parametric design based on sustainble design principles.


LI YU 581827 AIR FinalJournal  
LI YU 581827 AIR FinalJournal