Page 1

Special thank you to the L6 tutor team for their support

Pasha Jeremenko S18125471 ARC6013 /// DR3 Birmingham City University

EQUILIBRIUM(Biology) The state of balance maintained by the various organisms that live in a particular environment.

“The boss object makes that environment more visible. It does this, though, not by looking like the forces it engages, but by responding to them. [...] The object and the environment draw each out and force each other into an accommodation that is a record of their uniqueness - and care.” (Jones W. 1998)

10. 12. 14. 16.

Chapter 1 - Construct The year the UK stopped EQUILIBRIUM 2.0? Forma: revisited

18. 22. 24. 26. 28. 30. 36. 44. 46.

Chapter 2 - Deconstruct Rails Rails: explained Living pods: explained Living pods: assembly Element a.k.a. skin / device Element: explained Roof Closer look

48. 50. 54. 58.

Chapter 3 - Adaptations No weather state Extreme heat state Cold 1&2 states

62. 66. 68. 80. 82.

Chapter 4 - Reconstruct Site strategy Reconstructing states [Dis]order EQUILIBRIUM 2.0

[this page intentionally left blank]

WHAT AM I READING? EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 is the second part of the EQUILIBRIUM narrative. The first book tells a story about the creation of the form and the second book tells a story about the form’s evolution into an architectural entity.

To better communicate the narrative, the project is first deconstructed into parts and then these individual parts are explained. Then the project is reconstructed back together to form a holistic scheme.

This book is organised in a way, so the reader gets the breadcrumbs of the main concept throughout the whole book and in the end, comes to an understanding of the scheme as a whole.

However, for the scheme to be holistic, the book needs to be read from chapter 1 to chapter 4 in the provided sequence. Technical portfolio can be viewed after reading EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 book.

CHAPTER NOTE The first chapter of EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 is crucial to the narrative, as in the next pages I will paint the context of the project. The when, the why, the who, and a little bit of the how.

The context and the aim of the project are displayed in this chapter, therefore the base of EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 is being constructed.




Speculative site collage sequence

THE YEAR THE UK STOPPED According to many research teams, heatwaves exceeding 40 °C are on the horizon. Even now the highest registered temperature in the UK during summer is 38.7 °C. 1 That means that if the greenhouse gas emissions will not be dealt with, the heat waves will get stronger and exceed the summer limit.

Architecture’s aim therefore changes. It no longer is to maintain some sort of sustainability. Its aim is simply to survive and adapt to such weather.


However, most of the UK’s architecture is not made to tolerate such weather. Buildings lack passive ventilation and cooling systems.

EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 is sited in such context, where the weather got so extreme, conventional architecture cannot deal with it anymore. The heatwaves are so extreme, people are forced to leave their houses. Lots of outdoor activities cannot take place outside anymore. Therefore, people are forced to live a nomad lifestyle. Everyone is in constant search of shelter from such a climate.

Speculative UK temperature map diagram

1 - Christidis N., McCarthy M., Stott P. (2020). The increasing likelihood of temperatures above 30 to 40 °C in the United Kingdom. Nature Communications, 11(3039). Available at: https://www. [Accessed 12 Feb. 2021].

12 / 13





The equilibrium, in this case, is between the synthetic and the organic (or between architecture and nature). However, the idea of static and dynamic equilibrium is still carried through the project, yet is not the main focus of it. The project was designed in such a way, so architecture and nature work in balance. This balance then is what allows the architecture to adapt to nature’s extremes and survive in it. Throughout the book, the concept of equilibrium will become more and more clear and will be concluded in the end.

Sketch of equilibrium

2 - Jones W. (2011) CONVERSATION WITH WES JONES ABOUT THE NOTION OF MACHINE. Interviewed by Leopold Lambert, 6 Sept. Available at: https://thefunambulist. net/editorials/interviews-conversation-with-wes-jones-about-the-notion-ofmachine/ [Accessed on 25 May, 2021].

Wes Jones is the main icon for this project. EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 took a lot of inspiration from Jones for different aspects of the project. From architectural philosophy to drawing strategies. Wes Jones’s vision of technology as a mediator between humans and nature and the perception of architecture as an assemblage of machines pushed the concept of equilibrium. 2 Therefore the project (for most of its parts) was thought of not as a fixed entity, but as a living form, a machine, a device, or an assemblage of all three, which in the future will be referred to as the shelter (unless stated otherwise). Another big influence on EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 and EQUILIBRIUM is Cedric Price and his dynamic drawing style, parts of which were appropriated for this project.


EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 investigates how architecture can adapt to the created context of extreme weather. This is a thesis project, which explores adaptive architectural systems through the lens of emergent technologies.

14 / 15

Different form variations sequence (b/w)

Two surface-rendered variations of the form

Tween-curve diagram of the form showing the control points


The form was something that I had to start this project with and go through all the way. So, the form provided both: opportunities and restrictions.

The form functions through the manipulation of 2 main curves through their control points. Each curve has 20 control points. 10 of which are static and 10 are dynamic. Each one of the dynamic control points can be in 2 possible states (see diagram below). The 2 curves then form 2 surfaces which create the final form. Through the control points’ state, the form can be manipulated. Overall, there are over 1000000 possible variations of this form. This gave me a catalogue of potential forms to work with. (The catalogue was viewed and the form was manipulated through Grasshopper.) How exactly these formal variations were incorporated into the project will be explained later in the book.

Form diagram showing main curves and control points


Just before the deep dive into the project, the form derived from the previous book (EQUILIBRIUM) should be revisited, to remind the reader of the formal operations and constrictions.

Grasshopper script for form’s manipulation

16 / 17

CHAPTER NOTE In this chapter, the reader will be shown the deconstruction of EQUILIBRIUM 2.0. I believe, that the way it is organised best explains the process and reasoning behind the decisions made throughout this project.

First, the final machine is displayed, so the reader has a clear picture of it. Then the final piece is deconstructed into 4 main elements of the overall machine. Each of them then is explained and the process is shown if necessary.

1. solar park 2. shelter 3. train station 4. another shelter on the railway




3 4

Exploded isometric

RAILS The way the rails divide the original form is shown in the diagram below. They pierce through the form, splitting it horizontally, therefore creating floors.

On the exploded isometric drawing you can see the whole structure, where the rails form the main floor areas.

The exterior circulation strategy was appropriated from the Pompidou Centre in Paris.


The first part of the technological assemblage is the rail system. The shelter is divided into 9 floors. The rail systems were created to accommodate for the movement of the overall form.

Isometric diagram of rails performing as thermal mass

22 / 23

Photographs of wire model showing experimentation with divisions of the form

RAILS: EXPLAINED In the beginning, the shelter needed to allow for the movement of the form. As could be seen in the 1st chapter of the book, the 2 surfaces forming the final piece are in flux. They move, intersect each other, come apart and come back together. The shelter, therefore, needed to accommodate for this. On the left, you can see a wire model, through which I explored the division of the form. At the beginning of the project, I tried to divide the form vertically as it is shown on the model. The vertical segments would therefore hold the living areas within them. This idea was inspired heavily by Santiago Calatrava’s architecture and its adaptations to natural stimuli (in particular, the Milwaukee Art Museum).

Yet for several reasons the vertical division could not work for the shelter, therefore the idea was reviewed and the shelter was split horizontally instead. The sketches below show the thought process behind the horizontal division. Therefore, the living and assembly areas are placed on the horizontal rail systems.


But why the rails?

Sketches of form’s division

24 / 25




Floor plans of living pods (smaller pod and bigger pod)


The pods (as can be seen on the sketch elevation below) are sitting on the wheel systems which allow them to move along the rails. The pods are small, adaptive living spaces, for people in need of shelter. Originally, the pods were designed for a short period stay, however, the design evolved and the pods are able to accommodate travellers for a longer time than just overnight.

As can be seen on the floor plans, the pods incorporate adaptive furniture like retractable beds, tables, and wardrobes with inbuilt beds. The small floor area of a pod calls for such systems to allow for a longer stay. A lot of inspiration for adaptive furniture was taken from the company ORI LIVING, which specialises in adaptive furnishing. However, the private living area for the inhabitants does not end at the doorstep. The pods have an equivalent of a front garden. As the windows in the pods can be opened horizontally and on the front elevation of the pod is located a “LIFE BOX”, the area before the pods becomes inhabited as well. The LIFE BOX implies the celebration of water as a precious resource within the shelter, as it is a place where people can create small gardens.


The next part of the overall machine is the living pod. As mentioned before, it is located on top of the rail systems. Each rail accommodates one living pod. There are 49 pods in total. You can see the two variations of the pod on the left. The one on the far left is for 1-2 people and the one next to it is for 3-4 people. (There are 40 smaller pods and 9 bigger pods. The bigger ones are scattered across the floors).

List of possible plants which can be grown in provided environment: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Dogwood Bistorta Fern Grass Daisy Christmas box (Sarcococca) Dog rose Japanese anemone Montbretia Bugle Iris and others

Sketch elevation of the living pod

26 / 27

1. assembly area


No weather 2nd floor plan assembly diagram

LIVING PODS: ASSEMBLY If looking at one of the floor plans as an example of the living pod arrangements, it can be seen that all of the pods form a communal space in-between them.


That is the assembly area of the shelter. By moving, the pods create different sorts of spaces, where “outdoor” activities can take place.

So far, it is not important what type of activities can be accommodated in the shelter or when and why people assemble there, or why the pods can move. At this point, it is more important to understand how private and public life is arranged. The other questions will be answered further in the book.

Extreme heat 2nd floor plan assembly diagram

28 / 29

Device / element render (state 1)

ELEMENT a.k.a. SKIN / DEVICE Next on the list of machine parts is the skin of the shelter. The skin is what protects and engages with the natural stimuli. As could be noticed on the living pod plans, skin surrounds the pods from back and front. Each rail has 1 living pod and 2 skin parts. Each skin part is moved by the device which is sited on a similar wheel system as the pods themselves.

Skin and pods are interdependent agents. The skin creates the shape of the shelter and the pod is forced to move where ever there is free real estate between the 2 skin parts. As the shelter takes different forms (from the formal catalogue mentioned in chapter 1) the device moves parts of the skin on the X, Y, and Z-axis. As each rail has 2 skin devices, the overall form is achieved by combining all the skin parts (as can be seen on the drawings, the skin parts on each side of a rail are connected).

Device / element render (state 2)

/ 31



8 7 Close up isometric of the device + skin




ELEMENT a.k.a. SKIN / DEVICE Looking closer at the skin and the adaptive device you can see how it’s assembled. The skin consists of windows sitting in a steel frame with another steel origami-based frame, all of which are manipulated by the device with hydraulic presses. The device is powered by an electric motor, which itself gets power from the solar parks scattered around the shelter.

The material chosen for the origami-based frame is 3D-woven ‘aluminised’ fabric. This material was used in the proposed project for the PS1 Competition for 2007. MoMA Young Architects Program Competition. It is a lightweight material, which is incredibly strong and weatherresistant. It reflects light and heat, which is a crucial point in this project. However, why it is crucial, will be explained later.1


2 3

The hydraulic presses are located on another steel frame, parts of which can move (painted orange) as well to provide more adaptivity to the device and the skin.


1. 3D-woven ‘aluminised’ fabric 2. steel frame holding the windows 3. triple-glazed windows 4. adaptive parts of the steel frame holding the device (painted orange) 5. the hydraulic presses 6. electric motor powered by the solar energy 7. steel wheel system moving along the rails 8. steel frame holding the adaptive parts of the device (4, 5) 9. steel connections, linking the hydraulic presses and the ends of the steel frame (2) Project proposal for MoMA 2007 competition, which uses 3D-woven aluminised fabric.

1 - Meredith M. (2008) From Control to Design. Parametric/Algorithmic architecture. New York: Actar-D.

32 / 33

Parts of the deconstructed GIFF animation of the element.

ELEMENT a.k.a. SKIN / DEVICE For animated GIFF scan QR code or proceed to the link:


34 / 35

Physical model of the rail system + skin experimentations


The skin is what protects and/ or engages with the weather. As was mentioned before, the shelter takes different forms (from the formal catalogue), and the skin is what creates these shapes within the shelter. It is not crucial to know at this point exactly what forms the shelter uses, but it is important to notice, that the skin needs to protect the inside area of the shelter from the exterior weather conditions. Therefore it needs to be an enclosed entity, not allowing the weather to get past it.

Physical model of the rail system + skin experimentations

On this page, you can see the early development of the skin system. As it needs to be enclosed, I tried to create a skin that moves alongside the pods and yet protects them from the extreme weather. However, the model you see on the left did not work, as the 2 opposing surfaces of the form need to intersect each other in some variations of the form. Therefore, this particular model could not work, as the continuous skin would be ripped apart.


To start explaining why and how the skin was created, the purpose of it first needs to be outlined in more detail.

Sketches of the rail system + skin experimentations

36 / 37

Physical model of skin experimentations

ELEMENT: EXPLAINED The idea of the skin then evolved and I tried splitting the skin into parts rather than working with a continuous entity.

As can be seen on the model on the left, each rail has 2 skin parts that move alongside the middle rail. As in this model, skin is not continuous, the formal surfaces (which the skin creates) can intersect and create different shapes.


So, this model allows for much more movement than the last one.

Sketches of skin experimentations

38 / 39

Physical model of origami skin experimentations

ELEMENT: EXPLAINED Next, because the skin needs to be weather-proof, yet at the same time needs to change shape (stretch, come back together, etc.) the solution was needed to create a sort of skin that can be adaptive and take the needed shape.

This way, the shelter can create any form from the catalogue and the individual skin parts are able to accommodate it, while remaining weatherproof.


That is when I started exploring the origami tessellations and how they can fold and unfold.

In the model on the left, you can see the final exploration and transformation of the skin (Huffman water-bomb tessellation). The squares represent windows of the skin (for lighting strategies) and the white paper was transformed into the steel origami-based frame.

Sketches of origami skin experimentations

40 / 41

Physical model of origami skin experimentations testing daylighting

ELEMENT: EXPLAINED On this page you can see the daylight tests I did with the origami-based skin and the rails stacked on top of each other.


The skin lets enough daylight into the building while blocking the hottest sun of the year.

The sketches below show the thought process behind the adaptive device which moves the origami-based skin alongside the rails and lets the skin create different shapes from the formal catalogue.

Sketches of adaptive device moving the skin

42 / 43

Roof panels’ detailed isometric

ROOF The final part of the shelter’s machine assemblage is the roof.

The panels are adaptive. They can open up and close up, depending on the state of the shelter, which itself depends on the weather.


As the skin provided protection from the weather in-between the rails, the roof protects the shelter from the top (and partially from the side).

The roof panels are what protect the shelter from things like sun and rain. However, the panels also are able to harvest the rainwater to then transport it throughout the shelter.

m Roof panels’ isometric showing two states

44 / 45



m Detailed section cut + zoomed in details of pod’s wall build-up

CLOSER LOOK Here is a closer look at all 4 machines and how they come together. 3 out of 4 explained machines are adaptive and are able to move. However, the living pods accommodate more adaptive machines of a smaller scale (furniture).

This is the end of the deconstruction of the elements, and further, the book will explain the reasoning behind the assembly of these machines in more detail.




Cross section

46 / 47

CHAPTER NOTE This chapter will explain why the machines demonstrated earlier are assembled in such a way and why they function the way they do. The shelter’s aim is to adapt to extreme natural stimuli and this chapter will demonstrate how it does so.

However, first, it is important to outline the natural stimuli to which the shelter adapts. To avoid the overflow of information and unnecessary complexity levels of the project, I outlined 3 main weather states, which the shelter adapts to. The states are: 1. NO WEATHER STATE - a state of the weather, when no response is needed. When the outside temperature is pleasurable enough to not hide from it (between 12 °C and 32 °C). 2. EXTREME HEAT STATE - a state in which the shelter adapts to extreme heat outside, which can happen in the created context. The heat is considered extreme when the outside temperature is over 32 °C (as it is the temperature which is considered to be a starting point of when health issues can occur from being outside.) 3. COLD STATE - a state when shelter needs to adapt to the cold temperature outside. Which is below 12 °C, which is considered to be too cold for people to be outside comfortably. Further details are explained in this chapter.

No weather state form diagram showing ventilation strategy

NO WEATHER STATE The opening up of the form allows a lot of natural ventilation and sunlight to come into the shelter. The analysis of weather conditions (e.g. sun, wind) was done through Grasshopper’s Ladybug plug-in.


First - NO WEATHER STATE. The form chosen from the formal catalogue for this state expands on the rail system as much as possible to create more assembly areas.

No weather state form diagram showing lighting strategy

50 / 51

No weather state bay elevation showing assembly area

NO WEATHER STATE The roof opens up to let maximum sunlight in, the pods shift away with the skin to provide an area for more and bigger activities.


As can be seen on the bay elevation of one of the floors, the assembly area is at its maximum in this state, because the weather is not demanding.


52 / 53

Extreme heat state form diagram showing ventilation strategy

EXTREME HEAT STATE However, as can be seen on the formal diagram on the left, the shelter also forms wind tunnels throughout the whole form, which creates intense natural ventilation and natural cooling.


In this state, shelter closes up as much as possible to protect itself from the extreme heat and the sunlight.

Extreme heat state form diagram showing heat avoidance strategy

54 / 55

Extreme heat state bay elevation showing heat avoidance and day lighting strategy + assembly area

EXTREME HEAT STATE Because the rails serve as a thermal mass of the shelter and get naturally heated up by the sun, the overall form shifts away from the heated edges, into the cool middle of the overall structure, where the hot summer sun cannot access the rails. However, the chosen material for the skin frame (3D-woven fabric) bounces the light into the windows without transferring the heat.


As can be seen here, because nature demands, the shelter takes away the assembly area from itself while creating natural cooling and ventilation systems.


56 / 57

Cold 1 state form diagram showing passive heating strategy

COLD 1 / 2 STATES The shelter shifts its mass to the most heated side of the rails. The temperature / rain sensors scattered around the frame of the shelter communicate with the elements, allowing them to adapt to any given environmental changes.


Finally, the cold state. In this case, to create natural heating strategies, the shelter uses the thermal performance of the rails to its advantage.

Cold 2 state form diagram showing passive heating strategy

58 / 59

Cold 1 & 2 bay elevations showing passive heating and day lighting strategies + assembly area

COLD 1 / 2 STATES Depending on the sun position, whichever side of the rails gets heated the most, becomes the main floor area for the assembly space. If no sides are heated enough, then artificial underfloor heating starts working. The power for it is harvested by the solar parks around the shelter. The presence of unfolding windows and the front gardens and LIFE BOXES allows for smaller activities to happen in the assembly area when the building is the certain states.


As can be seen on the elevations below, because the weather demands, yet in a different way, the shelter, again, works in equilibrium with nature, by reducing its assembly area and providing a natural heating strategy.


60 / 61

CHAPTER NOTE At this point, the assembly of the machines and the environmental equilibrium were demonstrated.

Therefore, this chapter will reconstruct the shelter in its final form.

Site section + site plan references

/ 65

1. abandoned / destroyed buildings 2. shelter 3. railway 4. windrose




Site plan


SITE STRATEGY Now, as it is clear how the shelter functions and why it does so, it is appropriate to talk about the where and the what of the project. The site is Clifton road, an adjacent street to Alcester road in Birmingham, UK (same as outlined in the last book).

The shelter is rotated towards the prevailing winds in Birmingham to provide more ventilation. The strong wind in the back of the shelter creates positive pressure, therefore creating negative pressure on the other side, causing stronger air pull.


The shelter is placed on the railway, which accommodates the travellers from the train, which is the main mean of transport in the created context. The shelter has its own small train station built-in into the circulation system.

66 / 67


No weather state form diagrams

No weather state ground floor plan



No weather state interior visual (1)

68 / 69


No weather state form diagrams

No weather state 1st floor plan



No weather state interior visual (2)

70 / 71

No weather state roof plan



No weather state front elevation

72 / 73

Extreme heat state form diagrams

Extreme heat state 1st floor plan



Side elevation

74 / 75

Cold 1 state form diagram

Cold 1 state 1st floor plan



Cold 2 state form diagram

Cold 2 state 1st floor plan

76 / 77

/ 79

Plan disorder


EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 explores adaptive systems, which respond to the environment. As briefly mentioned in chapters 1 and 3, the way the equilibrium functions here, is between the architecture and nature. As could be observed, when nature demands, the shelter takes from itself and gives to nature. When the weather is not demanding, the shelter takes what it can, yet at the same time is ready to give back what it took at any time again. Only through the perception of architecture as technology or assembly of machines, is this equilibrium possible.

This thesis explores the ideas of this assembly and suggests one possible outcome, yet there are unlimited amounts of other outcomes in the machine=architecture paradigm, and architects like Wes Jones, Calatrava, and many others are proof of that. I believe, that only through the lens of this paradigm and the perception of architecture as a dynamic organism can architecture truly evolve from being this fixed, static entity. If a building is viewed as a box, it can only perform so much, yet if it’s viewed as a living form, the potential is limitless. This is the end of EQUILIBRIUM 2.0. Thank you for reading. You may proceed to the technical portfolio now.



Now, after being able to understand the shelter completely, conclusions can be drawn.

Burke, A., Tierney, T., 2007. Network Practices. New Strategies in Architecture and Design. New York: Princeton Architectural Press. Jencks, C., 1997. The Architecture Of The Jumping Universe. Michigan: Academy Editions. Jones, W., 1998. Instrumental Form: Words, Buildings: Machines. New York: Princeton Architectural Press. Meredith, M., 2008. From Control To Design. Parametric/Algorithmic Architecture. New York: Actar-D. Pelsmakers, S., 2015. The Envieronmental Design Pocketbook (2nd edition). London: RIBA Publishing. Reas, C., McWilliams, C,. (2010). Form + Code. In Design, Art and Architecture. New York: Princeton Architectural Press.

80 / 81

NO W. /// EXT. H. /// COLD 1 /// COLD 2 ///




“The boss object makes that environment more visible. It does this, though, not by looking like the forces it engages, but by responding to them. [...] The object and the environment draw each out and force each other into an accommodation that is a record of their uniqueness - and care.” (Jones W. 1998) EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 explores adaptive architectural systems through the lens of emergent technologies. The equilibrium in this case is between the architecture and nature. Only by perceiving architecture as an assembly of machines is this equilibrium possible. By assembling different sorts of machines the shelter adapts to the created extreme environmental context. Natural stimuli and architectural technology work in unison, therefore, allowing the shelter to survive in created conditions. The architectural potential displayed in EQUILIBRIUM 2.0 is only possible if thinking of architecture as a living form, rather than a static entity. The paradigm shift creates more opportunity for architecture to engage with its context.

Millions discover their favorite reads on issuu every month.

Give your content the digital home it deserves. Get it to any device in seconds.