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About Me.............................5


Design Futuring..................8 Design Computation..............14 Composition/Generation..........18 Conclusion......................24 Learning Outcomes...............25 Reference.......................26

PART B CRITERIA DESIGN B.1 B.2 B.3 B.4 B.5 B.6 B.7 B.8 B.9

Research Field..................30 Case Study 1.0..................34 Case Study 2.0..................40 Technique: Development..........48 Technique: Prototype............54 Technique: Proposal.............62 Learning Outcomes...............66 Appendix........................68 Reference.......................69


Design Concept..................72 Tectonic Elements...............82 Final Model.....................86 Additional LAGI Brief...........90 Learning Outcomes...............98 Reference......................104



ABOUT ME My name is Jessie, aka JieWen Wen. I’m a third year environments student, majoring in architecture. I must admit, architecture was a spontaneous choice for me, but so far, I have found it very interesting. What interests me the most is how people interact with their spatial environment and how a built environment impacts on humans in many aspects; emotions, interpretations, movement to name a few. Although half the time I find myself lacking sleep, the end result always gives me a feeling of accomplishment.I guess that is what architecture is... I was first introduced to digital design tools in Virtual Environments during first year. Since then,I have been experimenting and slowly improving my skills. I admit my skills are still very basic but I hope during this subject that my interest, understanding and skills in computation will improve as it is an increasingly important aspect to design.






Figure 1: 99 Red Balloon

LAGI 2012 COMPETITION Fourth Place Mention Title: 99 Red Balloons

Artist Team: Scott Rosin, Meaghan Hunter, Danielle Loeb, Emeka Nnadi, Kara McDowell, Jocelyn Chorney, Indrajit Mitra, Narges Ayat, Denis Fleury Artist Location: Winnipeg, Canada

The 99 Red Balloons is a seemingly simple approach, however its’ poetic and practical innovative nature shine through. The concept of a song named “99 Red Balloons” about hope and a better future feels very befitting to the LAGI 2012 brief of encouraging contemplation on the site of how humans should interact with the environment to the future. The balloons also meaningfully symbolize the release of pressure from the site’s use as a waste storage facility. 2012, 99 Red Balloons, image, <>.


“99 dreams I have had, In everyone a red balloon, It’s all over and I’m standing’ pretty In this dust that was a city. If I could find a souvenir Just to prove the world was here And here is a red balloon I think of you, and let it go” (99 Luftballoons, Nena, 1984.)

Figure 2: Balloon Structure

Why is 99 Red Balloons innovative? Who does not like balloons? With human’s natural curiosity for floating and flying objects, it is easily imaginable that a land filled with large balloons would bring about many visitors, especially children who are the future. Many artists have used balloon installations that aim to engage and bring curiosity to the participants such as ‘Cyclique‘ by the artist NOhista who used balloons as a canvas for light and music to bring curiosity. The innovative idea that the balloons can interact with the visitors through the site is very important as this sets it out from the other submissions of similar floating installations. With the balloons able to rise, disappear, clear or block a path, change colours or light up, it is plausible to suggest that it will bring about curiosity and contemplation with an increasing number of visitors.

Figure 3: Site Layout

The artists have used existing technology in a creative way that makes the project feel realistic and practical for the near future. They have been able to create opportunities for sustainable technology from their design intent. The balloons are photovoltaic solar generators 50 feet tall and 40 feet wide, the tops of the balloons float 100 feet in the air to fully engage the suns rays. , calculated to be able to power 4,500 houses annually. Piezoelectric energy is also collected in relation to the visitors being led to explore the site with cues and orientation from the balloons. The artists have taken care to design a provoking installation with minimal impact on the wildlife and land. This creative installation will create an exciting and inviting environment for visitors. Every visitors small actions would be echoed through this installation, encouraging understanding of our major impact on the environment and the need for a more sustainable future. This project leans towards a more artistic and cultural approach that makes it different and quite successful, respectfully earning it 4th place.

Figure 2: 2012, 99 Red Balloons, image, <>. Figure 3: Ibid.


LAGI 2012 COMPETITION Title: Calorie Park

Artist Team: Morteza Karimi Studio of Associate Professor, Lisa Tilder, at the Knowlton School of Architecture, The Ohio State University, Columbus Artist Location: Columbus, USA

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Calorie Park was an entry into the 2012 LAGI competition designed by Morteza Karimi. The concept behind this proposal is the idea to incorporate practical and efficient solutions for the site to be sustainable. There is an emphasis on using local sources of renewable energy to produce electricity, reflected in the use of solar panels in sunny regions and wind turbines in windy areas. However, the main renewable energy used is kinetic energy; converting mechanical energy produced by athletes into electricity while they exercise inside the installation.

Figure 5: Calorie Park Pod Model

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;It would be a smart decision to use local sources of renewable energy to produce electricity.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; - Morteza Karimi Figure 4: Calorie Park Render

The attractions to the site are clusters of pods, orientated to create a trail like maze across the site. The pods are approximately 15 feet in diameter and house fitness equipment that produces electricity while being used. The equipment chosen are retrofitted elliptical machines replaced with micro inverters to convert the athleteâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s kinetic energy to usable alternating current electricity. This technology comes from the human power generation in fitness facilities by the Berkeley Energy and Sustainability Technologies at the University of California. Although the proposal and technology appear very aesthetically appealing and innovative, there are some shortcomings where they could have developed the idea further more to better respond to the brief.

There is the reliance of the renewable energy source, kinetic energy which is quite unreliable, especially in this case. Whilst the pods are an inventive way of integrating exercise and architecture, can the designer be certain there will be a continuous flow of participants who will actually want to use the machines. Although Morteza has considered the shortage of mechanical energy during noon hours, solar panels have been added to the areas of the pods with most sun. However, this is also questionable with the changing of season and weather. Is it really sustainable or just an innovative aesthetic appealing idea? There is potential but it does require more work.

Figure 4: 2012, Calorie park, image, <>. Figure 5: Ibid.

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Figure 6: Project BIPV PV panels



Renewable energy has become increasingly popular in today’s society with environmental problems such as greenhouse gas gaining more interest in the world. The impact of our actions on the land is becoming more apparent and thus, new technologies are being created to harness energy that is sustainable and inexhaustible. Noticeable is the gradual increasing responsibility of architects and designers to incorporate sustainable technology.

One of the most used renewable energy is solar energy with the Earth receiving an abundant supply. Solar energy refers to the captured energy from the sun and can be transferred to usable energy such as electricity and heat. This form of energy is free, inexhaustible, has minimal impact on the environment and does not produce greenhouse gas or air pollutants. Currently, there are two main ways of harnessing solar energy; solar thermal and photovoltaic devices ‘PVC’. Whilst solar thermal generates heat from the light, PVC converts the suns light into energy through photons. The devices are commonly panels attached to the buildings with little design intentions; however, innovative ways are being used and developed by architects.

Figure 6: Wikipedia.Org, Project BIPV, photograph, <>.

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Hairy Solar Panel

Thin film solar technology utilizes thin PV cells. It is very interesting and can be used creatively in comparison to the tradition PV panels because of its flexibility. This flexibility allows for different applications to be generated, the geometry and surfaces.

Very interesting innovation is the hairy solar panels with its use of strange shapes and material. Researchers at McMaster University have succeeded in ‘growing’ light absorbing nanotechnology that is made of high-performance photovoltaic materials on carbonnanotube fabric. It aims to be flexible and affordable, and theoretically possible to achieve 40% efficiency. This technology brings a sense of creative thinking of how solar energy can be integrated in a fun way.

Integrated Concentrating Dynamic Facade (ICDF) Many buildings have attempted to integrate PVC panels on its façade. It creates many innovative and creative facades for aesthetic purposes, renewable energy as well as promoting sustainable technology. Unlike existing integrated PV that aims to attach PV panels after construction such as the Project BIPV by ISSOL, ICDF aims to integrate the system architecturally into facades while still providing diffused light and outside views.

Figure 7: Film Solar

All these technologies can be creatively used for the LAGI competition, utilising the large site area and understanding the environment and landscape. The energy can run the installation and provide energy for neighbouring buildings as well as feeding back into the grid. It is important to keep note that the location of the solar energy for maximum efficiency.

Figure 8: New Dynamic Solar Facade

Figure 9: Hairy Solar Panels

Figure 7: Treehugger, Film Solar, image, <>. Figure 8: Jetsons, New Dynamic Solar Facade, image, <>. Figure 9:, Hairy Solar Panels, image <>.

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COMPUTATIONAL DESIGN The world is ever changing as humans develop more technologies to cater for our desire of innovation. Noticeable in the design industry is the creation and ready adoption of new digital technologies that challenge the way designers process and develop perceived ideas into reality. Designing is the process of trying to obtain one’s desired outcome through a process of trial and error and it is during this process that challenging and innovative outcomes appear. Why digital technology has been embraced by many wellknown architects such as Zaha Hadid and Frank Gehry can be related to many aspects. As suggested in Kalay’s writing of ‘Architectures New Media’, computer-aided design has become tools that can propose design solutions and increase communication between different parties.1 Importantly, it provides an opportunity to experiment with alternative designs before construction, allowing for prototypes and resolving of complex elements. Through parametric and software, designs that would not be conceivable otherwise can be created that offers new perspective of design. Whilst there are challenges of using computational design techniques such as the thought that it narrows a designer’s creativity to the limit of a program, it should be embraced as an extra instrument for creativity. This can be seen especially in architectural studies where students are introduced to these tools early on with its growing presence in the industry.

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Figure 1: Parametric Model

Seacraft Eggs This project is by the Advanced Architecture Studio at the California College of the Arts. So many iterations of the same form can create many different designs. Each of these eggs has a different fprm- dynamic, elegant, simple. This has been enabled by utilizing computation tools such as Rhino and Grasshopper, to allow students to quickly understand the relationship between form, fabrication and materiality. These tools allow for experimentation and much iteration of the façade and form of an object before creating it. In Malcolm McCullogh’s book, Abstracting Craft, it poses that craftsmanship should be extended to digital media.2 It argues that craft is not tied to the tools of the designer but rather, it is the skill knowledge and understanding their works through a feedback loop of experimentations and iterations. Computation tools allow designers to be more skilled and knowledgeable in different areas that can augment their process.

Figure 1: Tumblr, Parametric, image, <>. Figure 2: Matsys 2013, Seacraft Eggs, photograph, <>. 1. Kalay, Architectures New Media 2. Matsys 2013, Seacraft Eggs, <>.

Page1 .5 Figure 2: Seacraft Eggs

Figure 3: Dubai Opera House

Page1 .6 Figure 4: Parametric Birds Nest

THE DUBAI OPERA HOUSE An interesting design that highly incorporates computational design techniques is the Dubai Opera House and Cultural Centre by Zaha Hadid. Zaha Hadid, well known and a leader in architecture of the world is one that is known to embrace and utilize computational technology in the design of her buildings. Many of her works are composed of complex and organic forms that appear to flow with the landscape and nature. She focuses on nature, soft forms and dynamism. They are innovative and futuristic, and it is very noticeable when one looks upon her work. From an interview, Zaha Hadid expresses that ‘What is exciting is the link between computing and fabrication. The computer doesn’t do the work. The workers are connected by digital knowledge…they have very different interests from 20 years ago’.3

Unlike many buildings found in our cities, composed of regular geometrical shape, these complex organic forms have only been achieved through modern computational design software. It is only until recently that advances in technology has allowed for ‘new opportunities to construct very complex forms as this would have been very difficult and expensive to design, produce and assemble using traditional construction technologies.’4 The Dubai Opera House settles within the landscape, with large main entrances to guide the audience’s attention inwards. Floating above the foyer are balcony levels to visually connect all the spaces, supported with a column slab system. The design intent and performance of Zaha Hadid is clear and not lost because of using technology. Instead, it incorporates and enhances opportunities to find the best solution and optimize design.

THE BEIJING NATIONAL STADIUM The Beijing National Stadium designed by Herzog & de Meuron is a well-known architectural building for its innovative form and façade, often referred to as the ‘Bird’s Nest’ for its interwoven structural steel trusses. Its large seamless form appears to be very complex and many would look at it in excitement and awe, wondering how such a design could be built. This would have been one of the architects’ intent as it was commissioned to be the main stadium of the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, a chance to show the world its economical progressiveness to the world. The nest-like structure was chosen because of its ability to produce a dramatic visual effect. With a complex design and many guidelines such as optimum views for spectators, the team had to rely heavily on parametric design software to achieve the optimum design.5 With the geometry so complex and numerous calculations, the building could only be realized with the architects designing their own parametric formula. This is extremely important to allow for form and performance of the building. Utilizing computation software allows for better communication between parties.

During construction; the model was used to provide dimensions for the steel fabrication.6 The realization of a complex design intent and construction has been realized through computational design for optimum performance and the resolving key design elements. Computational design techniques has allowed for new forms of architecture and design. Dynamic shapes, spaces, facades can now be created and reiterated quickly. As Kolarevic argues ‘the design information is the construction information’.7 Architects can now work more closely with the design as well as fabrication, and this can bring about innovative approaches to the relationship between conception and realization.

In this building, engineers and architects had to work closely together with many elements and reiterations developed into the parametric design. Figure 5: Beijing National Stadium Figure 3: Designboom, Dubai Opera House, image, <>. Figure 4: Tumblr 2013, Parametric Birds Nest, image, < >. Figure 5: Beijing National Stadium, image, <>. 3. Intelligentlife 2008, The First Great Female Architect, <> 4. Kolarevic, Architecture In the Digital Age 5. DesignBuild 2014, Beijing National Stadium, <>. 6. Gehry Technologies, 2012, Beijing Olypmic Stadium, <> 7. Kolarevic, Architecture In the Digital Age

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A.3 COMPOSITION TO GENERATION FROM COMPOSITION TO GENERATION All the design examples in the previous chapter are linked by employing computation technique. It is without a doubt that without the advancement of technology, they would not have been designed and created. For most of the 19th and 20th centuries, ‘composition’ has indicated the process or rules by which a work of architecture was designed.1 This concept is evident throughout history, from the design of Egyptian pyramids to convey the worship of the sun, Roman constructions using large columns and platforms symbolic of power, Gothic cathedrals with pointed arches to the modernist Le Corbusier’s formal compositions such as the Dom-Ino open house plan. The composition of architecture is not merely influenced by the design, but from a holistic approach, such as tradition, socioeconomic and technological advancement. More recently, there is noticeably a paradigm shift from the process of ‘composition’ to generation. The turn of age has emphasized our growing symbiotic relationship with technology. Computation has brought along a new process to architecture. Whilst computerization is defined by how architects use computers to digitise existing procedures, computation allows designers to extend their abilities to deal with highly complex situations such as the Beijing Stadium previously mentioned.2

Lucan, J 2013, The Story of the World, The Architectural Review, <>. Piers, B 2013, Computation Work Ibid.


2. 3.

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Whilst many argue that computation stunts an architect’s design process because of parameters and available tools and skills, programs are there to augment the design process as an additional tool. Architects are able to generate innovative designs by creating and modifying computer programs using codes and scripting – sketching by algorithm.3 Many architects have adopted using scripting programs such as Rhino and Grasshopper and are able to create software than just utilizing existing parameters. This allows for individuality and innovative designs, without boundary and limitless iterations. These designs would not have been able with just the human brain and manual skills. Integrating computation will allow architects to design environments, test building performances and for more complexity. Whilst computation generated designs cannot be realized, whether it’s structural integrity or the limit of our current technology, generation has allowed for a new form of innovative thinking for architects.

Figure 1: Shellstar Pavilion Interior

Shellstar Pavilion Architect: Andrew Kudless

Figure 2: Shellstar Pavilion Top View

Figure 3: Shellstar Pavilion Computation Process

The Shellstar pavilionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s form emerged from a digital form-finding process based on the techniques developed by Antonia Gaudi and Frei Otto. This pavilion was created within a parametric modelling environment, developed and iterated within a short 6 weeks. They had to go through 3 processes:4 1) Form-finding: It utilizes Grasshopper and Kangaroo that self organizes into this structure aligned with structural vectors 2) Surface optimization: Structure composed of 1500 individual cells; they have all been made as planar as possible using the custom Python script to simplify fabrication. 3) Fabrication planning: Each cell is unfolded flat and prepared with labels. The Shellstar Pavilion is a rather simple computation design that has been lofted, and then panelled to the best fit across the whole surface using a script. Although simple, this pavilion is quite elegant and is self-supporting. In terms of a pavilion, it does create interesting spaces for participants to gather and explore but very little environmental protection.

Figure 1: Matsys 2012, Shellstar Pavilion, image, <>. Figure 2: Ibid. Figure 3: Ibid. 4. Matsys, 2012, Shellstar Pavilion, <>.

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nonLin/Lin Pavilion ARCHITECT: MARC FORNES & THEEVERYMANY Marc Fornes & THEEVERYMANY is a well-known figure in computational design and fabrication. He has done extensive research on ways to describe complex curvilinear surfaces into a series of flat elements with a focus on the scripting process. Most of his projects are experimental and organic. One project is the 11 Frac Centre, generated through the computation design tool Rhino. He has created a very interesting curve linear sculptural pavilion, referred to as text based morphologies. It has an organic form, perforated with small star like holes and larger circles. While there appears to be little order and pattern to this form and simplicity, the prototypes are built through custom computational protocols. Many parameters of these protocols define the pavilion: ‘form finding (surface relaxation), form description (composition of developable linear elements), information modelling (re-assembly data), generational hierarchy (distributed networks) and digital fabrication (logistic of production).’ 5


Figure 4: nonLin/Lin Pavilion Top View

Most of these parameters would be apparent in computation works. Without parameters, there would be no generation as programs require designer to input directions to then generate an output. He ran into some design problems during generation; from network to surface condition and from nonlinear morphology to descriptive geometrical search into linear elements.6 The morphology of the pavilion originates from a ‘Y’ model, the basic representation of multi-directionality. From there, he had addressed the issue of morphology by splitting and recombining surfaces to deviate away from linear spaces. Experimentation with density, radii, and network were aimed at creating a spatial environment with intrinsic and extrinsic moments for the participants. There was a high degree of morphological difference through customization because the massive amounts of elements have different properties which in turn change the final outcome. He then went into specific local level for control and to complexity and to understand the level of repercussion of any relationship within each code. To realize the pavilion, it has needed to be broken up into strips for assembly.

Figure 4: Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, image, <>.5. Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, <>. 6. Ibid.

Figure 5: nonLin/Lin Pavilion Fabrication

Figure 6: nonLin/Lin Pavilion Fabrication

Through this design process, Marc Fornes has developed a visual phenomenon that astounds spectators and it also allows them to interact with it, being selfsupporting and spatial layout as a pavilion. However, it must be recognized that the pavilion is a precise experiment toward constructing within an economical and cultural context.7 Marc Fornes has created many other interesting computation designs such as the Plasti (K) Pavilion and Proposal that uses approximation driven through a single path curve. This is an interesting and beautifully designed pavilion that allows people to interact with it. It is only through a long process of computation design; parameters, scripting, experimentation and reiteration has it become the form it is.

Figure 7: nonLin/Lin Pavilion Interior Figure 5: Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, image, <>. Figure 6: Ibid. Figure 7: Ibid. 7. Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, <>.


â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Our form of utopia is based on speculation. We visualize a specific future scenario and aim to approach it with the help of technology.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; - Francois Roche

Page.22 Figure 8: Mosquito Bottleneck Render

MOSQUITO BOTTLENECK ARCHITECT: FRANCOIS ROCHE- R&Sie(n) Architects R&Sie(n) Architects works are truly something out of the ordinary. They focus on developing technological experiments, so called architectural ‘scenarios’. These experiments are designed through cartographic distortion or territorial mutations, transforming nature into a dynamic element of the design.8 They began using computation early on and have integrated this tool within their designs, with deep understanding of digital and algorithmic tools. Very interesting aspect is how they resolve the relationship between nature and the building. Scenario: 1)Detect the mosquito-borne West Nil Fever virus on the island. 2)Developing a Klein-bottle twist between the two contradictory date: humans and insects 3)Living and dying of mosquitoes in house trap 4)Introducing a fragile structure and materials, like fabric netting everywhere, in recognition of the geographic position of this island 5)Weaving together all the surfaces of the house 6)Resonance between the buzzing of the mosquitos and vibration of the structure An interesting aspect is that the building is adaptive. The system is arranged so that there is sufficient excess capacity to adapt to the changing environmental stresses. In Mosquito Bottleneck, the form and materiality has been designed and chosen because of its purpose and relationship to the environment. It is a complex process to generate this design. From diagrams, it can be understood that they began by collecting data of the movement of mosquitoes. From this data that creates a simple data, they were then able form complex structure through scripting that behaves in the same way.9 It then in turn will self-assemble into a more complex structure and so forth. They then gathered data on human movement and it is only through algorithmic solution were they able to create this specific Klein-bottle twist, a mathematical sequence in the structure and reiterations. It can be seen the thorough analysis, iterations and in particular, the connectivity and dialogue between the environment, architect and computer to create a homogenous relationship to the landscape and life forms that must coexist for a ‘utopian’ world.

Figure 9: Mosquito Bottleneck Modelling

Figure 10: Mosquito Movement Data

Figure 8: New Territories 2003, Mosquitoes, image, < >. Figure 9: Ibid. Figure 10: Ibid. 8. Designboom 2010, Francois Roche, < >. 9. Labeca, A 2010, R&Sie The Question of Morpho-ecology architecture and Engineering, < >



Architecture is a growing discourse, which continues to evolve over time. It changes and adapts to many aspects of our world. It is this nature that we as designers should understand the need to approach architecture through a holistic view. It is important to understand the history and how architectural processes and ways of thinking has come about and changed, influenced by many aspects such as politics, tradition, socio-economic and especially in this subject, technology. From only having a pencil and rubber to now having computers and 3D software, there has been a evident paradigm shift in architecture. The ways in which compositions and theories dictated the path of architects is now being rewritten. For architects to move forward in this technologically reliant society there is a need to embrace computation as a tool and think of it as an integral part to the design process: generation. This is reflected in the increase to the introduction and learning of computer design software in universities. Whilst many have argued that computation software stuns the creativity of designers, this software can only generate forms when the designer inputs certain instructions or scripts. They enhance oneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ability to create innovative forms that could not be imagined or drawn with hand and allow for many iterations and unlimited possibilities. The outcomes of architects who have and are still experimenting have led to many beautiful and complex structures that could not have been achieved otherwise. In this project, the computation software Rhino and Grasshopper will be used as tools to generate parametric forms and algorithmic based structures. By creating scripts, we are designing something new and innovative, something that hopefully, surprises even ourselves. Also, having to incorporate a sustainable a form of energy of renewable, in this case solar energy helps to engage us in the possibilities of computation and how it can help to create forms that will benefit us and the environment. Such things as generation an interesting pattern for the surface area to capture sunlight or an inspiration form that interacts with participants can be experimented and iterated quickly. This is the excitement that lies in using computation.



Having come into the subject with only a vague understanding of computational design, this introductory section has been a real eye-opener to what it is exactly and the potential they have to generate and improve oneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s design. Through classes and experimentation, I have gained more understanding of the designerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s role within parametric modelling. The concepts of parametric design, algorithmic scripting, generation, computation design were all so foreign and alien at the beginning. It made me very apprehensive and afraid to even begin to understand and experiment. I presume this is what stops many people from delving into computation design. Similar to learning a whole new language, it is hard to grasp and familiarize to something completely new, especially over a short period of time. The process requires practice, time, trial and errors and a lot of experimentations. Through the lectures, tutorials and online tutorials, I have been able to slowly grasp the idea of the logic behind these tools. I feel that I am improving my Grasshopper and Rhino skills and understanding how these two programs actually interact, whereas in Virtual Environments, it was merely pressing buttons and out comes a form. Now, I see beyond a mere button, to the many possibilities to create innovative and beautiful objects each code or combination of codes can. I have come to view architecture in a new light during the design process in ways of parametric design and algorithmic designs. Admittedly, learning Grasshopper and Rhino is a difficult task. As I have found in regards to computers, there are many frustrating times when things do not work and you have no idea why or the knowledge on how to fix it or where to turn to. However, when you do learn to use a tool and it works, the feeling is so rewarding because in front of you is an innovative form that you have learnt to create. I hope to improve my skills because of the many possibilities it can offer to take a design to the next level.



Figure 1: 2012, 99 Red Balloons, image, <>. Figure 2: Ibid. Figure 3: Ibid. Figure 4: 2012, Calorie park, image, <>. Figure 5: Ibid. Figure 6: Wikipedia.Org, Project BIPV, photograph, <>. Figure 7: Treehugger, Film Solar, image, <>. Figure 8: Jetsons, New Dynamic Solar Facade, image, <>. Figure 9:, Hairy Solar Panels, image <>.


Figure 1: Tumblr, Parametric, image, <>. Figure 2: Matsys 2013, Seacraft Eggs, photograph, <>. Figure 3: Designboom, Dubai Opera House, image, <>. Figure 4: Tumblr 2013, Parametric Birds Nest, image, < >. Figure 5: Beijing National Stadium, image, <>. Kalay, Y 2014, Architectureâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s New Media: Principles, Theories and Computer Aided Design, MIT Press, Cambridge. Matsys 2013, Seacraft Eggs, <>. 3. Intelligentlife 2008, The First Great Female Architect, <>. 4. Kolarevic 2003, Architecture In the Digital Age, Spon Pres, New York. 5. DesignBuild 2014, Beijing National Stadium, <>. 6. Gehry Technologies, 2012, Beijing Olypmic Stadium, <>. 7. Kolarevic 2003, Architecture In the Digital Age, Spon Pres, New York. 1.



Figure 1: Matsys 2012, Shellstar Pavilion, image, <>. Figure 2: Ibid. Figure 3: Ibid. Figure 4: Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, image, <>. Figure 5: Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, image, <>. Figure 6: Ibid. Figure 7: Ibid. Figure 8: New Territories 2003, Mosquitoes, image, < >. Figure 9: Ibid. Figure 10: Ibid. Lucan, J 2013, The Story of the World, The Architectural Review, <>. 2. Peters, B 2013, Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Though, Architectural Design, 83, pp. 8-15. 3. Ibid. 4. Matsys 2012, Shellstar Pavilion, <>. 5. Marc Fornes & THEEVERMANY 2011, nonLin/Lin Pavilion, <>. 6. Ibid. 7. Ibid. 8. Designboom 2010, Francois Roche, <>. 9. Labeca, A 2010, R&Sie The Question of Morpho-ecology architecture and Engineering, <http://urbantick.blogspot. \>. 1.





MATERIAL SYSTEMS An element that is often forgotten when using digital design is material, thought of as a passive aspect that comes secondary to the design realisation. Material construct is a result from a system of internal and external pressures and constraints. It is these pressures that determine the physical form.1 Whilst these aspects of materiality are inseparable in the physical world, they are usually treated as a separate entity in the virtual processes of computational design, beginning with geometric form generation then to the consideration of material properties.2 More often than not, this creates a clear disjunction between the digital and physical world. A material system identifies specific geometric proportions and various parametric parameters that will allow the design to be realized. There is a growing understanding of the characteristics and behaviours of the materials themselves, as well as the development of entirely new materials. This paired with the increasing sophistication of computational design has changed the design of everything such as cars, and more recently, architecture.3 There is consideration of the material during the generation process and it is thought of as imperative to the process and outcome rather than being an afterthought. These points are crucial as parametric design tools become complex, designers need to establish the relationships by which parts connects and has become to be part of “design thinking”.4

SECTIONING One material system is sectioning- such as contouring and waffle grids. Sectioning has been increasingly fabricated using digital architecture, with a growing number of precedents available. Apparent is the opportunity to utilise materials with an understanding of the existing parameters. An example is fabricating panels of wood to create a visual perception of flow; dynamism and movement by understand the grain direction and integrity of the material. Sectioning is one method that allows for exploration of different geometries and forms that can be fabricated into the physical world. There needs to be consideration of parameters and relationship of elements such as the length, amount of intercepting planes, thickness, and joinery for the designs to be able to be fabricated.

University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. Ibid. Taubman College 2013, Material Systems, <>. 4. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 5. Ibid. 1.

2. 3.


As Woodbury argues in ‘How Designers Use Parameters’5, parametric modelling enables a divide-andconquer strategy so that there are understandable links from parts to parts. With better understanding and exploration of the algorithm and scripting, material systems can be created using digital design tools.

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010 ARCHITECT: ICD/ITKE The Institute for Computation Design (ICD) and the Institute of Building Structure and Design (ITKE) designed a temporary pavilion in 2010. The aim was to showcase the latest developments in material-orientated computation design in this innovative structure.6 Unlike conventional design, the computation generation of the pavilionsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; composition and form is entirely driven by the materialâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s characteristics and behaviour, an example to what was discussed previously in the introduction.7 The structure is made from birch plywood strips, taking into account the elastic bending behaviour to inform the structure. The plywood strips have been robotically manufactured as planar elements which are then connected at specific points so that they bend and are under tension along different parts of their length. This method was applied so that the locations of each connection point maintain the tension and bending to increase the structural capacity of the system.

Figure 1: ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010

To be able to create this pavilion, understanding, arranging and editing dependencies is the key parametric task.8 The computation design model has been dependent upon embedding the material behavioural features of the birch plywood in parametric principles.9 The parametric dependencies included a large number of physical experiences on the deflection and tension of the elasticity and bending of thin plywood strips. All the revelation geometric information is based on 6400 lines of code, outputting the data required for the structural analysis model and the fabrication of the plywood pieces with a 6-axis industrial robot to create this material system.10 Creating this strips and sections allowed for the fabrication of an innovative curvilinear structure using planar surfaces and the natural elasticity of the plywood.

Figure 1: Figure 1: Rolandhalbe, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, image, <>. 6. University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. 7. Ibid. 8. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 9. University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. 10. Ibid.


OneMain Street ARCHITECT: dECOi ARCHITECTS OneMain Street designed by dECOi ARCHITECTS has created a sustainable office built of renewable plywood that displays the use of computational design. The project utilises a seamless and non-standard protocol of customized fabrication that is able to imbue the design with a curvilinear continuity at a detail and spatial level.11 It creates a very elegant, natural and dynamic atmosphere to the space, indicative of the careful consideration and employment of sectioning- a material system. They have been able to do so by employing a fabrication method called ‘unitary fabrication’. It offers a streamlining effect by cutting stacked sectional elements from flat plywood sheets using a single 3-axis numeric command milling machine.12 This machine has fabricated all the visible elements of the design from ceilings to the static furniture and functional elements such as ventilation grills and door handles by milling the mass of wood.

This point is emphasized as they developed parametrically variable elements with the surfaces of the project deforming to create bumps or valleys in the floor for ventilation and lights. The formal language of this sectioning system is the curved cuts with equal precision as straight lines that efficiently maintains surface continuity and can be prefabricated quickly and accurately. This automated algorithm seamlessly passed from design to fabrication with high tolerances and low percentages of error.14

dECOi Architects 2011, OneMain Street, <>. Ibid. Ibid. 14. Ibid. 11.

12. 13.


An important aspect and problem was the scripting and machining protocols. dECOi ARCHITECTS firstly had to streamline the milling process for speed and economy. Secondly, it was imperative to develop milling protocols for the complex-curved edges of the plywood sheets to find the most elegant ‘weeping’ tool paths for the most efficient paths to cut the wood. To do so, they developed scripting protocols that would analyse the surface geometry and automatically divide the parts.13

Figure 2: OneMain Street Interior

Figure 3: Birch plywood panels

Clear in this project is using scripting and parametric to create this material system. Not only does it generate the design, but it is part of the whole design- the goal of using renewable material, the curvilinear shape and the spatial environment.

Figure 4: OneMain Street 3D Model Figure 2:, OneMain Street, image <>. Figure 3: Ibid. Figure 4: Ibid.


B.2 CASE STUDY 1.0 BanQ ARCHITECT: Office dA The BanQ designed by Office dA is another example of using computational design with the sectioning material system and has been used for the explorative case study. BanQ is a restaurant located in an old banking hall of Chicago. The space has been conceptualized around the z axis, between the ceiling and the ground to remain a flexible space to be able to cater for different activities.1 The small spaces in the x axis give a glimpse into the internal working of the structure.

As discussed in ‘Woodbury’s’ article, this is a strategy of copy and modify.4 By utilising this existing code, it reduces the job of making a model and is easier to edit and change than creating a code from the start. As in our exercise, moving in steps and making sure it works is very efficient and allows for quick iteration and exploration of the material system to create something innovative or our own. As will be seen in the following explorations, interesting forms and patterns have been created.

Office dA has created a flowing interior by developing a striated wood-slatted system that conceals the view of the mechanical and lighting systems as well as being a visual canopy for the restaurant. Their aim for developing a seamless landscape has been realized by considering the geometry of the wood slats to conform to the equipment and is radiused to smoothen the relationship between the adjoining equipment. They have used a ceiling ‘drip’ and ‘slump’ strategy for the ceiling for the location of smaller details such as the exit which has been reflected in the seemingly floating continuous columns.2 Acknowledging parameters, each rib of the ceiling is made from unique pieces of three-quarter inch birch plywood adhered together to create a continuous member.3 This in turn is fastened to the main structural ribs running perpendicular to the lattice. Interestingly, spacing between the ribs is variable to create a visual illusion of density of the surface from different angles. This undulating topographical interior has been developed using a material system algorithm that consisted of many parameters. Using this existing material system in our exercise, it allowed for an easy process of minor iterations to bigger ones, resulting from small changes (such as a movement in u value) or bigger changes such as adding a component to change the specie. Figure 1: BanQ Exploded Perspective


Figure 1: Yatzer 2009, BANQ Restaurant by Office dA, image <>. Figure 2: Ibid. 1. Archdaily 2009, BanQ/Office dA, <>. 2. Ibid. 3. Ibid. 4. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 5. Australian Design Review 2009, Banq, <>.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Once we realised we had a system, we wanted that system to yield the most provocative readings.â&#x20AC;?- Nadar Tehrani (Principal in Charge).5


Figure 5: BanQ Interior





Change amplicatioin of movement (2.6 -> 5)



Change amplicatioin of movement (0.85 -> 3)



Change U-value of subdvide (10 -> 7)



Change V-value of subdvide (10 -> 5)



Change number of segments H/P frame (35 -> 45)



















dynamic, innovative, sculptural




Having employed few iterations to the original specie, a simple elegant form has been created. As with many designs, it does not have to be out of the ordinary to be beautiful. In contrast, the simplicity of the small bumps and flow create many opportunities with a simpler shape. It appears much like a natural landscape enviornment that could in turn reflect the need of our consideration for the natural environment, generating a specific spatial experience of the indivduals.

Unlike the other species, this was created using a series of horizontal sections constrained by a height paramter. As a result, an interesting spatial layout of voids and openings has been created which provide an opportunity for different spatial transition and experiences. Interesting is the resemblance to a canyon, with its composition of organic elements such as valleys and hills along its surface. This could be exploited by using specific materials to reflect a natural landscape to generate an indivudalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s spatial progression through the space. These qualities would bring curiosity and interest to attract more participants.

This form is very beautiful and the most dynamic and sculptural. It brings to mind a flower with freshly opened petals such as the Calla Lily flower or a tree spreading its canopy across the landscape. An an interesting ambience could be created through the spatial progression, enhanced with careful use of the dynamic voids and solids along the structure. This has been created by using a radial component so that the sections join up in the middle which could create a potential communal point or a main focal attraction to attract participants to walk to the end of a progressive journey through a landscaped form.

Although this selection resembles the simple form of the original specie, the addition of amplification components has created a more dynamic and sculptural form. An interesting aspect is the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;upside downâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; orientation. Whilst it is still dominated by gentle flowing curvelinear sections and not as innovative as others, usable dynamic spaces of voids and solids have been generated in various locations. These locations could allow for opportunities to create spatial experiences such as communal areas and private reflection areas. As it is one whole flowing surface, solar energy could be easy employed onto this design with high efficiency.



Lignum Pavilion ARCHITECT: FREI + SAARINEN ARCHITEKTEN The Lignum Pavilion is a project designed by Frei + Saarinen Architekten that has clearly utilized the material system of sectioning for its overall form and detailing. The Lignum Pavilion was created to inform the public about the many possibilities of contemporary wood applications in the construction field.1 Only by utilising a fully digitized production process has it been possible to optimize not only the assembly system but also the quantity of material used.2


Figure 1: Lignum Pavilion

Incorporating the digitized production of sectioning, the design team has been able to reduce costs considerably to fabricate the pavilion and to make the most of the characteristics of wood. In this project, the expressive potential of wood has been realized through sectioning, as wood is known to be strong with compression.

Figure 1: Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, image <>. 1. Archdaily 2012, Lignum Pavilion, <>. 2. Ibid.

Figure 2: Lignum Pavilion Digital Model

Figure 3: Lignum Pavilion Geometrical Process

The pavilion consists of a walkable pile of 20 layers that consist of 50mm-thick planes assembled together and braced with vertical elements of 130mm in height.3 Geometrically, the resulting design is a subtraction of a ‘figure 8 knot’ from the original nucleus which is then sectioned in horizontal layers.4 Interestingly, the sections create an architectural promenade in the shape of a spatial ‘figure eight’. By using a figure eight and sectioning, there is an elegant interaction between the interior and exterior. The sectioning of wood defines the space and expresses a modulation of rhythm, creating a flowing space for visitors to experience as they walk through the space.

Figure 4: Lignum Pavilion Interior

This project by Frei + Saarinen Architekten appealed to us not only because of its aesthetic elegance but its intelligent use of sectioning and wood. The design is fully digitized and also aligns to the aim of incorporating material strategically and economically to reduce costs and using technology to create perfect sized pieces. Although it appears rather simple, the design of using ‘figure 8 knot’ is rather difficult to replicate. However, we believe that the form, materiality and spatial elements of this pavilion would be very appealing to a wide audience.

Figure 2: KarmaTrendz 2013, Lignum Pavilion, image <>. Figure 3: Ibid. Figure 4: Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, image <>. 3. Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, <>. 4. Archdaily 2012, Lignum Pavilion, <>.



1) Generate a desired figure 8 using curve tool and control points

2) Create two pipes using the pipe component (one with a larger radius)

5) Equally spaced recta tracted on the x plane f

6) Equally spaced rectangular frames are subtracted on the y plane for vertical sections


3) Implement a boundary box at the nucleus

4) Use solid difference to subtract the two brep sets from each other

angular forms are subfor horizontal sections


Figure 8 curve

Create a pipe along the curve and edit the form

Offset the first pipe to create a secondary pipe with a larger radius

Boundary box

Use solid difference between the two brep sets

Create horizontal sections using solid difference between the brep and horizontal planes


Create vertical sections using solid difference between the brep and vertical planes



There are many similarities and differences of our final reverse engineered model in comparison to the original. Although we tried to replicate the exact form, this was impossible without the original curve. By making our own curve, the pipes that were then formed to create the shapes of the pavilion are a variation of the original figure 8. Following the diagrams of how the Lignum Pavilion was created using computation (refer to Figure 3), a boundary box was used to subtract the nucleus. Whilst the intersecting space we produced is interesting, I feel that it does not express the same experiential qualities as Lignum pavilion. The passage way in the Lignum Pavilion is elegant and interesting with a more gentle curved shell and intimate spaces that would allow for a more personal spatial experience with the pavilion rather than a near symmetrical tunnel shape in the reverse engineered model. I think the horizontal and vertical sections were replicated rather well, with sliders that allow us to control the range of both. However there sections appear more step-like but I think this has to do with the original form and more experimentation with the sliders. The spaces created and bounded by the sectioning in the Lignum Pavilion is something I would like to investigate and incorporate into our design. There can be many more interesting forms and shapes that can be sectioned. I would also like to incorporate and further explore the use of the material system of sectioning, such as the positioning, thicknesses, spaces in between and amount. It would be nice to try and create a landscape or topographical element using sectioning along the Lagi site in conjunction with interesting passages and different experiential spaces.






Change D value of range in vertical section (25 -> 45)



Change N value of range in vertical section (5 -> 20)



Change N value of range in horizontal section (19 -> 30)



Change D value of range in horizontal section (9 -> 20)



Change radius of first pipe (3.5 -> 2)







Change radius of second pipe Change Y value in XYZ vector Change Z value in XYZ vector (5 -> 3) of horizontal section of vertical section ( 1 -> 2) (0.2 -> 0.6)



Change X value in XYZ vector of horizontal section (0 -> 20)







Change D value of range in vertical section (25 -> 45)



Change N value of range in vertical section (5 -> 20)



Change N value of range in horizontal section (19 -> 30)



Change D value of range in horizontal section (9 -> 20)



Change radius of first pipe (3.5 -> 2)







Change radius of second pipe Change Y value in XYZ vector Change Z value in XYZ vector (5 -> 3) of horizontal section of vertical section ( 1 -> 2) (0.2 -> 0.6)



Change X value in XYZ vector of horizontal section (0 -> 20)




dynamic, innovative, sculptural




This design is very close to the original form. However, just by varying the vertical and horizontal sections, it looks really dynamic with a non-symmetrical structure. It appears that the bottom half of the form creates a tunnel passage for visitors but with varying cuts that could cater for different experiences as you walk through the site. The top half reminds me of a skeletal structure and the design could be expressive of its construction. However, I still find it a little chunky for my liking and the design could be more sculptural to attract visitors.

Using a mirror component in addition to the brep has created a very interesting form. With more spaces, there is an opportunity to include additional potential spatial developments such as the void and solid elements that I want to play around with. The intertwining of the two spaces creates a meeting space where users could meet and reflect on their surroundings and the messages we are trying to send about renewable energy. Renewable energy could also be placed in more ways on this form and I really like the idea of people having different pathways to walk along. There could be addition of lookouts and platforms over the form created with the sections. This form is our favourite iteration. It reflects the curved nature that we are aiming for with the horizontal and vertical sections that express movement such as our Lignum Pavilion precedent and how we want to guide people along this path. I think with this form, there can be more experimentation with the vertical and horizontal sections such as varying the spacing and positioning as well as the amount. All these elements could create different spatial experiences and it also gives the idea of how we could use renewable wind energy with moving ribs on the site that had not been one of our considerations before. We like this idea of a passageway along the site where people can see different views as they traverse through.



Process: After selecting from our iterations, we decided the need to use Fablab for more precise fabrication of our preferred digital models. The first prototype is based on one of the first iterations we had made from the previous section B.2 for Case Study 1.0 because the idea of a dynamic topography on the site is still very appealing with the ability to create different spatial experiences and views.


We had to lay it out on a Fablab Rhino Template and changed the 3D model into 2D curves to be scored and cut. Laying out the pieces from top to bottom, left to right, it made it easy to identify positioning during fabrication. Mount board was chosen for easy fabrication because it is thin but still has some rigidity.

Although the process was quite fast, the thinness of the mount board meant it was harder to attach onto the base. There was also apparent burn marks on some pieces from the laser cutter. This prototype gave us a clearer idea of how it would look on site and the countless iterations of views on and off site and different paths on the LAGI site, and also lighting and shadow play.



Process: The second prototype is our favourite iterated digital model from B4 because of its varying horizontal and vertical sections and sculptural qualities. We also applied further thought into varying the positioning and amount of horizontal and vertical sections to allow for different interaction from users with the site such as paths and views.


We made a grasshopper algorithm to create notches between the junction of the vertical and horizontal planes to make sure they fit perfectly. During fabrication, the material became a problem because it was too thin and bent. The horizontal sections also began to bend where there was no vertical section connection so we may have to add some structure to keep this form stable.

We realized there needs to be more consideration into the material used for this design as well as more experimentation of the orientation and arrangement of the sections because of lateral weaknesses at certain sections where it would bend. The prototype has also given us another idea of renewable energy; wind because of the ribs that could flap and vibrate to produce energy and also lighting effects with sun.












Figure 1: Land Art Generator Initiative, n.d. Site Photos, image < xid-13528024_2>.



Figure 1: Site Photo Montage








Copenhagen is well known for its innovations in green spaces and efforts of incorporating renewable energy in the city towards the future. Thus, we hope to reflect these ideals of a sustainable city to the public to promote awareness and contemplation of energy generation and consumption through installing an innovative, interactive and sculptural design onto the site. The LAGI site is located next to a harbour with limited ways of arrival for users and thus will need to be dynamic and iconic to attract users. There are tourist attractions located a relative distance from the LAGI site and this knowledge can be incorporated through different views and perspectives from and onto our design.

After engaging with the prototypes, a prevalent renewable energy source has been chosen; wind. Denmark is one of the pioneers in wind energy with the highest rate in the world. In 2012, 22% of electricity was produced by wind power with the aim to get that up to 50% by 2020.1 Parallel to the LAGI site is a wind farm with high winds coming from the South, South-West, especially along the harbour where the site is located. We have decided to incorporate Piezoelectric Vibration Energy Harvesters.2 These membranes will be located in the rib sections of our design that will be orientated parallel to the wind direction for optimum vibration. As the ribs vibrate, the crystals in the membranes will go under compression and tension which result in electrical energy being produced and fed into storage. It will also pick up vibrations from elements such as rain. We hope to engage users on the site by promoting users to physically sway and interact with the ribs so they themselves are part of the energy making process on the site. With a focus on movement, kinetic energy will be a source of intake with the installation of PaveGen3 along the guided passageway of our design, encouraging people to further explore the site. As additional attractions, we are to incorporate a new technology named Starpath4 to attract users at night to walk along the PaveGen. It features a spray on coating that produces a glow in the dark effect on the ground by capturing UV rays and emitting at night. This will allow us to manipulate userâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s movement through the site with visual lighting effect.

FORM We aim to design a space that will contrast to the static nature of the surrounding industrial site, to give users a place to visit and relax away from the city. The key aspect that drives the form of the design is movement. This form has been achieved by using the material system of sectioning that emphasises horizontality and verticality in order to influence fluidity and movement across the site. Through much iteration, the chosen design is a very sculptural form with varying vertical and horizontal sections to express dynamism on the site. The spacing and number of sections have been given much thought in order for users to have different spatial experiences across the site and has only been achieved through careful consideration of the junctions. Our chosen form is able to best project the invitation for users to keep moving and exploring the site through suggested paths and create circulation. These elements have resulted in the successful incorporation of potential spatial development with void and solid spaces, an interactive passage along the site and different views.

Sustainia 2003, Solutions for Sustainable Cities, State of Green. 2. Piezoelectric Vibration Energy Harvesters, MIDE, 2014, < products/volture/piezoelectric-vibration-energy-harvesters.php>. 3. Pavegen Systems Ltd 2014, Pavegen Systems, <>. 4. Hogarth, B., 2014. 1millionwomen: Incredible Electricity-Free Alternative to Streetlights. <> 1.


PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT The space created expresses continuous dynamism, movement and fluidity where users will feel increasingly engaged and energized as they traverse through the site. This is produced through sight from the sectional and horizontal planes, variations and spaces of voids and solids as well the swaying and sounds of the moving ribs. The site will become a social hub for people to relax and reflect, whether this be during the day or night. Not only will they begin to understand and appreciate innovative renewable energy opportunities, the energy system promotes users to be a part of the energy making process for further contemplation and understanding of what our project means.


Figure 2: Site Photo Montage

B:7 LEARNING OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOMES The main criticism received during the interim review was the need to further consider and review what renewable energy to use rather than a superficial understanding and addition of the renewable energy onto our form. Whilst there were good comments about the sculptural form and the detailing, there needs to be more iteration and constraints that would be applied to the form once a type of renewable energy was reconsidered which would alter the design. I think this was due to our concentration on using a 3D tool to find a perfect form rather than researching more and understanding what parameters to apply to the algorithm. An idea suggested that I really like is the inclusion of wind energy which would work really well with the current design we have. There needs to be hard work in the coming week to reach a resolved design. The objectives of studio air: 1) Interrogate a brief. 2) Ability to generate a variety of design possibilities for a given situation. 3) Skills in various three dimensional media. 4) Understanding relationship between architecture and air. 5) Ability to make a case for proposals. I have learnt that understanding and interrogating the brief is vital to creating a desired outcome that needs to relate to the brief. These are the minimum goals that need to be achieved before one can move on. The LAGI brief allowed for a lot of freedom but also some constraints and research that we was required. Throughout the semester, the creation of iteration and matrixes by changing algorithms given and then moving onto making our own algorithm promotes ones abilities to progress really quickly in learning how to manipulate and use the tools given. By having free exploration, one can learn through not only successful outcomes but also failures and gaining an understanding. A really enjoyable task was reverse engineering, that took a lot of effort but gave us some parameters to know where to begin and the form we were trying to achieve. The main three dimensional media that has been used throughout the semester is Grasshopper and Rhino. There is an intrinsic link between the two and while sometimes it is easy to change one thing in Rhino, it may be harder in Grasshopper so learning both can enable more efficient use of programs. There is also a need for Rhino to create files that can actually be sent to the Fablab to be fabricated to be made into prototypes for testing. Having the ability to quickly iterate digital models is really useful with limitless outcomes, but there is always a difference when it comes to making it in the real world as there are more limitations and capacities of technology and construction. Learning through precedents during this semester has really helped me to gain an understanding of how people realize their projects through the use of computer programs. The ability to conceptualize a design but also letting go and creating innovative digital designs is really hard when you already have a preconception of what design you would like. I think this is the main difference between utilizing these programs to the full potential. It is most exciting when you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t realize the crazy and exciting forms that can be created which can only be achieved through any iteration and exploration. Having been required to write arguments and our thoughts throughout the semester made writing a proposal easier. However, there is a need to relate back to the brief and being very concise to our design concepts that had to be throughout the whole process. Computation can be seen to play a huge part in the changing of how we view architecture with the ability to learn programs becoming easier with many tutorials and online help.






Figure 1: Rolandhalbe, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, image, <>. University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. Ibid. 3. Taubman College 2013, Material Systems, < concentration/material_systems/>. 4. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 5. Ibid. 6. University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. 7. Ibid. 8. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 9. University of Stuttgart 2010, ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2010, <>. 10. Ibid. 1.



Figure 1: Yatzer 2009, BANQ Restaurant by Office dA, image <>. Figure 2: Ibid. Archdaily 2009, BanQ/Office dA, <>. Ibid. 3. Ibid. 4. Woodbury, R 2010, How Designers Use Parameters, pp. 154-170. 5. Australian Design Review 2009, Banq, <>. 1.



Figure 1: Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, image < http://www.contemporist. com/2013/03/06/lignum-pavilion-by-frei-saarinen-architects/>. Figure 2: KarmaTrendz 2013, Lignum Pavilion, image <>. Figure 3: Ibid. Figure 4: Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, image < http://www.contemporist. com/2013/03/06/lignum-pavilion-by-frei-saarinen-architects/>. Archdaily 2012, Lignum Pavilion, <>. Ibid. 3. Contemporist 2013, Lignum Pavilion by Frei+Saarinen Architects, < lignum-pavilion-by-frei-saarinen-architects/>. 4. Archdaily 2012, Lignum Pavilion, <>. 1.



Figure 1: Land Art Generator Initiative, n.d. Site Photos, image, <>. Figure 2: Land Art Generator Initiative, n.d. Site Photos, image, <>. Sustainia 2003, Solutions for Sustainable Cities, State of Green. 2. Piezoelectric Vibration Energy Harvesters, MIDE, 2014, <>. 3. Pavegen Systems Ltd 2014, Pavegen Systems, <>. 4. Hogarth, B., 2014. 1millionwomen: Incredible Electricity-Free Alternative to Streetlights. < au/2013/10/16/incredible-electricity-free-alternative-to-streetlights/> 1.



C.1 DESIGN CONCEPT FEEDBACK AND DIRECTION The main points that needed addressing after the interim presentation: • To experiment and justify the overall form of the design • Integrate the form with its ability to produce energy efficiently and innovatively • Research a specific technology and work out optimal conditions and propose arrangements to balance optimised result with an interesting architectural outcome To address these feedbacks: • Experiment and refine the form and placement: - Sculptural, organic and elegant form - Consider the size of the form in relation to the site and to try utilize much more of the site - Integrate with renewable energy - Produce different spatial experiences - Include elements that can be more interactive for visitors • Research into the piezoelectric technology used and generate ways it can be incorporated into the design rather than simply putting energy harvesters inside the ribs Whilst our original form was praised for its elegance, the constructive feedback was the need to create a form that utilized more of the site and to provide evidence of research and argument as to how it integrates wind energy of the specific site effectively, thus generating this new design.


Our design form is an undulating organic landform that runs along the ground. This form will be indicative of the valleys and hills of Copenhagen along the length of the site. It will contrast greatly to the industrial site and invites people to contemplate and relax away from the city. It aims to reflect the urban life in Copenhagen, with the two paths directed towards the river on site as water plays a major role in the layout of the city and aims to revitalize the site which was a very busy fishing port into a social hub once again. The contours are made of varying sized steel rib structures lined with rotating panels attached to steel wires. These forms vibrate and sway with the wind, breathing and having a life of its own which creates interest and curiosity on the site. The passages lead visitors to see different views from the river side and access to the water ferry dock. Movement is a key aspect in the design. Accessible through many means of transport, the pavilion encourages movement along the site emphasized through sectioning. The ribs, wires and panels all flutter and oscillate when wind is blown through the site from the South, South Westerly winds. This creates an ever changing visual phenomenon that creates an appearance of a live moving structure. Visitors can also be part of the energy production on site by helping to vibrate the panels, as well as stepping on Pavgen tiles. There will be two different spatial experiences, the normal pavilion walkway with swaying sires and panels and the cathedral pavilion. The cathedral pavilion will consist of much larger ribs that sway in the wind to create electricity. The site encourages visitors to interact with the site and to feel increasingly engaged and energized, expressed through the continuous movement and dynamism.






















Figure 1: Avedore Wind Rose 1999

Figure 2: Copenhagen RiverFront Figure 1: Danish Meteorological Institute 1999, Observed Wind Speed and Direction in Denmark, graph. Figure 2: TravelBlog 2008, Copenhagen River Scene, image, <>.



The wind in Denmark is predominantly westerly, and it moves along different tracks from west in a direction north of Denmark1. The closest wind station is Avedore and it predicates the placement of the design. West, south-west is where most wind energy would be generated. The curves have been orientated along the length of the western border. It is a journey for visitors to walk away from the city and towards the river through a scenic route, exposed to the wind. Most of the ribs have been orientated parallel to the west or south winds so that the wires which hold the panels will be perpendicular to the strongest winds. This will result in in the wires vibrating at a high frequency to create more energy.

Figure 3: Copenhagen Market Street

The chosen final form is a fine balance between an elegant sculpture and integrating renewable wind energy efficiently. As it is really easy to create many iterations of the design onto the site, the chosen form must fit into the design concept criteria: - An organic sculptural form - Must take into account renewable wind energy and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s limitations and capacities - Be interactive and create different spaces - Reflect the city of Copenhagen to further resolve the design form and arragement

Figure 3: Copenhagen Portal 2014, Copenhagen-Shopping, image < >. 1. Dansih Meteorological Institute, 1999, Observed Wind Speed and Direction in Denmark.



The chosen final form is a fine balance between an elegant sculpture and integrating renewable wind energy efficiently. Whilst most of the forms appear quite organic, they respond less to the criteria. Single pavilons were now ruled out because of its simplicity and the idea of just guiding visitors to an end. The curves have been orientated along the length of the western border. It is a journey for visitors to walk away from the city and towards the river through a scenic route, exposed to the wind. Most of the ribs have been orientated parallel to the west or south winds so that the wires which hold the panels will be perpendicular to the strongest winds. This will result in in the wires vibrating at a high frequency to create more energy. The ribs are of varying heights, designed to create different spatial experiences and to capture wind at different heights as the higher the rib, the more wind force. The iterations created many different sized pavilions but many appeared to be repeated. Two cathedral pavilion spaces, which consist of the largest ribs have been created on the west border, as higher the elevation equates to higher wind speeds. Panels were integrated with the wires to increase vibration and to add an experiential quality to the journey with people being able to play with the panels. Square panels were chosen because it has the largest surface area to capture wind energy and provides many opportunities to easily control the views. Using an attractor point, places of good views generated no or very small panels to allow people to easily look out from the pavilion.





















Cathedral Pavilion: 100x100 Steel I Beams 100x100 SHS Steel Connection Plates Steel L Plates at the bottom bolted to the Plate and welded to truss Gusset weld on truss bolted to everything

Concrete Block Isolator Ceramic Plate Concrete Block Bolts Groundwork


Flashing required at the junction where the wire cuts through the wood cladding.

Mide Vibration Harvester Clamped onto the steel wire which are lined with panels




The base of a truss formwork rib has been prefabricated to test out its strength and joints. Under loading, the members behave very well in compression and tension. We have chosen to use steel in real life because of its high strength to weight ratio and flexibility, allowing the ribs to be free standing. The truss has been bolted together and it provides sufficient structure and rigidity. Quite a few elements have been used to make this detail, and simplification of these elements may result in less structural rigidity. Fabrication time and cost is feasible, however it would have been better to model this detail with the actual materials such as steel.







As we approach the newly developed site of Refshaleoen, undulating landforms appear to protrude from the ground. The form is indicative of the valleys and hills of Copenhagen with its organic curve linear form gently snaking along the site. Contrasting to the static nature of the surrounding industrial site, The Whisp is an innovative place for people to visit, contemplate and relax away from the city. It is advantageously situated on the south, south-west end of the site to best harness the strongest winds of the harbour in Refshaleoen. Designed with multiple passageways, the form interlinks opposing landforms- the city to the water with new points of connection. It aims to revitalize the site which was a very busy fishing port into a social hub once again. It also aims to reflect the urban life in Copenhagen, defined by the river running between roads and one of the largest pedestrian shopping walkways. The contours are made of varying sized steel rib structures lined with rotating panels. These forms vibrate and sway with the wind, breathing and having a life of its own which creates interest and curiosity on the site. The passages lead visitors to see different views from the river side and access to the water ferry dock.

The key aspect that drives the form of the design is movement. The site can be accessed by car, boat, cycling or on foot and provides a series of movement along its length. This form has been achieved by using the material system of sectioning that emphasises horizontality and verticality in order to influence fluidity across the site through passageways. Two passages of ribs intersect near the beginning to encourage visitors of all ages to explore and experience different spatial qualities.


The passages are composed of a series of ribs, separated into two distinct spatial experiences; walkway pavilion and the cathedral pavilion. The ribs also act as the structural element of the pavilion. Winds cause the panels to flutter and rotate, oscillating against the wires to create quick vibrations. It creates a visual phenomenon of a constantly changing and moving structure accentuated with the whirling and whistling of rotating elements across the body. Visitors are enveloped in a separate world under the pavilion with constantly changing views. Visitors can engage with the structure by playing with the panels to become actively part of the production of energy. Not only does this encourage understanding of renewable wind energy but also to recognize the importance as to how we interact with the environment. Highlights of the site are the cathedral ribs, very grand ribs located towards the end of the passage that sway back and forth to the invisible forces of the wind, bringing awe to the visitors as it opens out onto the water. The spaces focus on the interaction between the wind and its effect on the form. This is used to express continuous dynamism, movement and fluidity where visitors will feel increasingly engaged and energized through touch, sound and sight.









THE WHISP Energy Capacity:

ENERGY HARVESTING Located in Refshaleoen, Denmark, the most prevalent renewable energy source has been chosen; wind. The design has been orientated on the South, South-West to correspond accordingly with the strongest winds. As well as dictating the form, the ribs also act as the structural component. They are threaded with thin steel wires attached to Piezoelectric Vibration Energy Harvesters at each end and attached to the ribs. The wires are lined with panels of varying sizes to increase oscillation of the wires for more energy output. The cathedral ribs will be fixed to Piezoelectric ceramic lead zirconate titanate (PZT) plates so when the ribs sway due to its increased height and weight, the plates will compress and stretch to generate energy. Pavegen, a system that uses kinetic energy is also incorporated as movement is a key aspect. Additionally, the technology StarPath will provide a glowing path at night to attract visitors and promote kinetic movement by capturing UV light during the day and emitting it at night.

Piezoelectricity Vibration Harvesters1: 1 Piezoelectricity Harvester= 0.05mW/s 120 Ribs x2 Piezoelectricity Harvester in total= 12mW/s= 378.43MW/year 378.43MW/year X 40% efficiency= 151.372MW/year Piezoelectricity Ceramic Plates: 1 Piezoelectric Ceramic Plate= 0.06W/s for 1 piezoelectric ceramic plates - there are 50 plates 50 Plates= 3W/s = 94.6MW/year 94.6MW/year X 50% efficiency= 47.3MW/year Pavegen2: 1 Pavegen Plate= 2.1W/hr 1500 Pavegen= 3150W/hr= 27.6MW/ year Total Energy Produced= 226.272MW/ year

1. 2.

Mide Technology 2010, Piezoelectricity Vibration Harvester, <> Pavegen Systems 2014, Pavegen, <>




The primary material used in the design is steel for all the ribs. Steel is one of the most sustainable materials in the world with positive factors of low waste, flexibility, speed, long lasting, economical, reusability and recyclability. These ribs will be prefabricated to be more economically sound. Steel is 100% recyclable which helps to save energy and reduce CO2 emissions.3 The ribs will be durable to not rust from natural elements such as rain or wind or lose its shape which offsets the initial high embodied energy. Thin steel wires will be threaded along its length, connected to the Piezoelectric Vibration Harvesters and bolted into the ribs. The panels will be made of aluminium because of the following ideal properties: lightweight to ensure less resistance to wind, recyclable and reusable whilst only expending a small amount of energy and being durable.4 The panels will be of varying sizes with the largest at 1.5m by 1.5m. The ribs will be cladded with sheets of locally sourced bamboo to maintain an organic light feeling structure. Bamboo is a highly sustainable material because of its efficiency and ability to grow rapidly.5

Copenhagen is well known for its efforts to incorporate renewable energy in the city towards the future to achieve 100% renewable power. The Whisp aims to reflect and promote these ideals, encouraging awareness and contemplation through an innovative and interactive design, showcasing a sculptural form that generates energy through wind power. The land will need to be dug out in some parts to install the ribs. Tourists and natives alike will be attracted to the new pavilion which will in turn bring more pedestrian traffic to the land. There would be a reduced waste through using recycled materials.

The Whisp Energy Capacity = 226.272MW/year If average of 249kWh/month for a typical home= power up to 530 houses Embodied Energy6: Steel (recycled): 37210 MJ/m3= 297680MJ Aluminium (recycled): 21870 MJ/m3= 174960MJ Bamboo: 5720 MJ/m3= 45760MJ The Whisp Embodied Energy= 518400GJ= 518.4TJ The Whisp Embodied Energy return= 6~7 years (wind dependant)

World Steel Association 2014, Sustainable Steel, <>. Australian Aluminium Council 2013, Properties and Sustainability, <>. EcoDesignz, 2006, Bamboo, <>. 6. Canadian Architect, 2008, Measures of Sustainability <>. 3. 4. 5.



C.5 LEARNING OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOMES OBJECTIVE 1: Interrogate a Brief This was an important aspect to keep in mind at all times during the semester and especially in Part C as the course felt more lenient towards our design and more interested on our computational experimentations. However, it was crucial to think in a way of how innovative and random experimentations in a new program allowed for very interesting solutions to a brief. I felt the LAGI 2014 competition brief was quite interesting but also hard at the same time- the need to integrate an elegant form and renewable energy was hard to balance.


OBJECTIVE 2: Generating a Variety of Design Possibilities Learning to use grasshopper and related software was really helpful. It sped up the process of generating much iteration quicker than if just using Rhino. Example of these are shown in B2 and B4, where matrixes were to be created quickly by changing or deleting components to create forms that we did not expect. It also allowed us to play with the algorithm we created for the final model to try and explore more ways to create a better form that responds to the brief.

OBJECTIVE 3: Developing Skills in Three Dimensional Media

OBJECTIVE 4: Understanding of Relationships between Air and Architecture

By engaging with different software, I was able to develop some skills in three dimensional media that was lacking. Although I found it quite hard to pick up, the interface allowed for users to try different things without being intimidated by it. Three dimensional media allows for so many more opportunities from the field. In Grasshopper, plug ins were explored to try and help us with creating interesting forms and shapes. It was a progressive journey throughout the semester in experimentation and slowly learning things that one felt interested in.

As I increasingly found towards the semester, there is a inter relation between architecture and air. The ability to explore and generate limitless possibilities brings up many questions such as can it actually be made, when will this be plausible, what have I made, would it work. All these questions need to be resolved which makes it hard for a person to choose one and go with it because there are many more. Studio AIR has been enriching, teaching new skills that can be applied to finding a job as there is shift towards computational techniques.

OBJECTIVE 5: Ability to Make Proposals Throughout the semester, there has been a push for critical thinking, especially of our designs. Studio AIR has fostered these skills for us to be able to convey our designs and ideas in an academic dialogue of computation work. I find that this is one of the hardest skills to learn. Often, there are many things that have not been considered or come close to your mind which the tutors and crits point out and you wonder why you never thought of it. I have also found it hard at times to argue for computation generated designs because it is still experimental and whilst it may be interesting, it would not be sound.

OBJECTIVE 7: Foundational Understanding of Computational Elements Air has introduced me to a new side of architecture that I have always been afraid of delving into. In learning and understanding computational methods, data structures and data flows has allowed us to take these new skills and apply them in an innovative way to create crazy shapes and designs.

OBJECTIVE 6: Develop Capabilities for Analysis of Architectural Projects I have learnt how to find and learn from precedents, especially looking at them for inspiration into our own design, not just aesthetically but also the role of computation in a play. These were especially relevant in Part A and Part B for us to gain an understanding and to test our skills by reverse engineering before then creating our own definitions.

OBJECTIVE 8 Developing a Personalized Repertoire of Computational Design In a semester, I feel that my knowledge and ability to engage with computational design has increased. Although often I still find it hard, it has opened up my eyes to the many exciting opportunities that computational design can bring. I can now use these skills and develop them for further exploration and use.


During presentation, the main critical feedback was that we did not explore and go into depth enough, especially our details. Mainly, we felt this was due to the lack of convincing diagrams and rendered images during presentation and thus, it was hard for us to argue the concepts and ideas behind the form. We made sure to produce diagrams and models of these in our journals. There was more research done on wind, and social aspect of the site and its relation to the form, as well as the joints and structural integrity of our ribs. Our critcs responded favourably to our form, saying it was rather elegant and there was sensitivity to our site but not enough thought into the renewable energy. I think this was one of the things that took a lot of time and distracted us from the brief. We took a long time to figure out what kind of design we wanted on our site, the aesthetic nature rather than also focusing more on the renewable energy and we felt confused for a few weeks with conflicting feedback. In the end, I think we tried our best to do the best we could with our design concept which does focus more on the architectural sculptural form to be a place that people want to visit and walk through. Going further, I think we could have explored much more into creating some more spatial experiences such as a covered canopy or more intersections, or fluttering objects other than panels and this would enable us to progress our project and I wish we had more itme.

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As previously discussed, the objectives have been achieved throughout the semester. I had come into the subject very apprehensive of what to expect and from what I had heard. I knew I was not good with computation tools with the very basic skills. However, with very helpful tutors, videos and group mates, I have been able to achieve each weekâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s tasks and to not be afraid of going beyond to explore the many possibilities. Although I still consider my skills to be basic, I am surprised at how much I can achieve using grasshopper and whilst a bit slower than others, I can still generate very interesting and innovative forms by walking around. This subject has enriched my knowledge of how computational design is related to architecture and how it is an integral part to the way forward. Although there are people who solely say that it should all be done by hand, I think learning and understanding computational design is necessary in this modern age. I have to come to realize the many advantages. It allows for limitless iterations, exploration of forms, some that could not be drawn or imagined by the human mind, ease of fabrication. However, I also felt that Grasshopper limited my abilities because I did not have the skills to understand how a definition was not working or how to make something. This process was frustrating but rewarding and a sense of accomplishment when a solution can be found. I know that the skills I have learnt will be useful in the industry and I will definitely aim to continue to improve my computational skills.

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C.6 Reference C.1 Figure 1: Danish Meteorological Institute 1999, Observed Wind Speed and Direction in Denmark, graph. Figure 2: TravelBlog 2008, Copenhagen River Scene, image, <>. Figure 3: Copenhagen Portal 2014, Copenhagen-Shopping, image < >. 1.

Dansih Meteorological Institute, 1999, Observed Wind Speed and Direction in Denmark.

C.4 1. Mide Technology 2010, Piezoelectricity Vibration Harvester, <> 2. Pavegen Systems 2014, Pavegen, <> 3. World Steel Association 2014, Sustainable Steel, <>. 4. Australian Aluminium Council 2013, Properties and Sustainability, <>. 5. EcoDesignz, 2006, Bamboo, <>. 6. Canadian Architect, 2008, Measures of Sustainability <>.

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