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Architecture Design Studio: Air

2013 Semester 1

Yun Wa Lai 531600

Self-Introduction My name is Yun Wa and I come from Hong Kong. I am a third year student major in architecture. I like aesthetic objects and therefore I am interested in model making and drawing. I have tried to learn different designed software like Rhino, Revit, AutoCAD and Google sketchup. I hope I can produce physical aesthetic designs and show them to people. I have learnt Rhino since last year from the virtual design class. Rhino is powerful design tool which can generate different form of designs by drawing curves. The lantern on the image is my virtual design. I am looking forward to learn grasshopper in this semester as grasshopper has many strong commands to create abstract structures like voronoi pattern. When I was graduated from high school, I did not know anything about Architecture. I joined this faculty because I thought Architecture is something about art and drawing. In my first year of university, I hate architecture because of its heavy work-load. However, I was inspired by Toyo Ito’s designs in my second year. I began to get interested in architecture. Toyo’s aesthetic designs give me a feeling of comfort and natural. This is my final virtual design. The idea of my design is about water movement. I chose water to be the designed element because water is the central elemental force of nature. Water can be various forms in different states. The inner life of water can be portrayed easily by its flow-form which is constructed by a series of curvy line.

INDEX Part A - Case for Innovation A.1. Architecture as a discourse A.2. Computation A.3. Parametric deisgn A.4. Algorithmic Exploration A.5. Learning Objectives and Outcome

Part B - EOI2 Design Approach B.1. Design Focus B.2. Case Study 1.0 B.3. Technique: Development B.4. Technique: Prototype B.5. Technique proposal B.6. Algorithmic Sketches B.7. .8. Learning Objectives and Outcomes

Part C - Project Proposal C.1. Design Concept C.2. Tectonic Elements C.3. Final Model C.4. Algorithmic Sketches C.5. Learning Objectives and Outcomes

Case for Innovation Part A



Architecture as a discourse Human always believe that current technologies is the way which is able to challenge nature. Most architects create designs with crazy form and structure. They try to display their “fashionable architectures” to the world to show their ability to design. However, these architectures are generally lack of efficiency in terms of energy and space optimization. There are many things we can learn from nature, for instance, nature systems, materials, processes, structures and aesthetics. These elements can be applied to sustainable architectural designs and solve technical problems. They help architects to seek new directions for their design. “Life has had millions of years to finely-tune mechanisms and structures (such as photosynthesis, or spider’s silk) The emulation of this technology is the goal of biomimicy, the art of innovation inspired by nature.” (Design with purpose, viewed 01/04/13) Innovation in design is important because it provides people with new and unique feelings in different environments which make them feel knowledgeable and special. For example, a contemporary space in a building provides a place for people to think and spark debates. ‘Above all, architecture ought to be seen as discourse. Buildings as material facts are a small part of overall field of architecture, a field which is bettter regarded as a networkof practices and debates about the built environment.’ (Richard Williams, ‘Architecture and Visual Culture’, in Exploring Visual Culture : Definitions, Concepts, Contexts, Edinburgh University Press, 2005, pp. 102 - 116) Architecture is a language which is able to speak to people of its time and place. Therefore, architecture should provide a network and space for people which can speak to discussion about the culture and built environments. However, everything we see and we know they all come from nature. Therefore, the entity of nature is perfect and aesthetic. That is the reason why we should also pay attention to the nature system and learn what nature does to make things effective.

Precedent - The Eden Project Biomes in Cornwall

In the TED talk, Michael Pawlyn (who worked with GrimshawArchitects and was part of the core team of architects that designed the Eden Project.) focuses on three important concepts taken from nature: radical resource efficiency, linear disposal to closed loops, and drawing energy from the sun. These principles of idea are important to develop sustainable designs in the future. He listed a few examples from nature of how we should be humble and obtains the good things from nature. If we can learn to make things and do things in the way nature does, we can save a lot of energy and resource use. One example from TED talk was a biomimetic building, the Eden Project Biomes in Cornwall. ( ?v=4y0fEYptvEk) This project consists of hexagonal, inflated cells supported by steel frames. Its appearance is a collection of giant bubble. This architecture is extremely cost efficient because its form and structural pattern optimize the efficiency of its internal space.

This building is enclosed with an insulating polymer membrane that has one hundredth of the weight of a glass solution which becomes one of the lightest structures ever made. This design also involves passive solar principles. The building itself is self-heating. The geometry of the roof is panelled with hexagons derived from phyllotaxis. Phyllotaxis is done by mathematical calculation of the growth of plants. This pattern arrangement a lows the steels to be fixed together in a very stable way. It optimizes the surface area of the building in order to receive the largest amount of solar energy. The gateway project should include similar natural structure system, material and pattern in order to achieve a sustainable and aesthetic design. Also, theform or the structure of the building should be able to integrate into its built environments so that people can see the relationship of the building and its environments. This is the way which architecture could speak to people of its time and place.

Precedent Taichung Metropolitan Opera House

This architecture was designed by my favorite architect, Toyo Ito. This design reminds me of a giant vessel. Toyo Ito developed this organic geometry using an interlocking system. This system allows walls, floor and ceiling of the building blend together. The walls themself become the main structure of the building to take vertical and horizontal loads. Most of his designs are composed of geometries and natural elements which create a new aesthetic theory of architecture.

By observation, we can learn any form and structures from nature and see what they can do to optimize energy efficiency. This organic design is a good example which both wall and column becomes one body as the structural part of the building. This design optimizes the structural space of the building. The project might require huge construction costs because it requires a lot of work on calculations for its algorithm and use of material. This is what we should consider for the gateway project, a proper algorithm method, material use and space optimization as nature always does things in the most efficient and simplest way. ‘Architecture needs to he thought of less as a set of special material products and rather more as range of social and professional practices that sometimes, but by no means always, lead to buildings’ (Richard Williams, 'Architecture and Visual Culture', in Exploring Visual Culture : Definitions, Concepts, Contexts, Edinburgh University Press, 2005, pp. 102 - 116)

A.2. COMPUTATION Computation is a process to help architects exploring new idea of designs. Computation has many different meanings. In Brady Peters and Xavier De Kestelier’s article, Sean Ahlquist and Achim Menges define computation as ‘the processing of information and interations between elements elements which constitute a specific environment; it provides a framework for negotiating and influencing the interrelation of datasets of information, with the capacity to generate complex order, form, and structure.’ In other words, computation is a process following an explicit model expressed as an algorithm. Algorithm is a step by step procedure for performing a computation. It requires inputs and outputs through the whole procedure. If the inputs of the program have been placed in a wrong position, the result will not come up or it will come up with something totally different. ‘Design highlights two of its aspects. The first is “procedure”: an algorithm is a process that must be specified step-by-step. Designers largely describe objects rather than process. Teh second is “precise”: misplaced character means that an algorithm likely will not work.’ (Woodbury, Robert 2010., Elements of Parametric Design, London: Routledge) So is computation a necessary method for design? Can we design a building without computation? Algorithm is a set instruction for computer to solve problems. It is a language to be understood by the computer and used to instruct the computer to work out programs logically. ‘An algorithm is a particular set of instructions, and for these instructions to be understood by the computer they must be written in a language the computer can understand, a code. (Computation Works: The Building of Algorithmic Thought, edited by: Brady Peters, Xavier De Kestelier, March/April 2013) The commands which we use in Rhino have been translated from algorithm code. These commands are refined language to be understood by designers. Even they first use RhinoScript they can modify their designs through the power of computation.

Precedent Serpentine Pavilion

When we take a look of the building, “Serpentine pavilion”, the columns of the building slant at differernt angles depending on the floor. The method to generate these “dancing columns” is what was called rotating square algorithm. In a Toyo Ito interview, Ito talked about the idea of his Serpentine pavilion project and brought out the definitionof algorithm. ‘I have discussed algorithm with Cecil (Balmond). He describes algorithm as some kind of rule that can create something new and more dynamic situation than some random lines’. ‘The randomness human beings are able to conceive is limited, and that things we had not imagined are more likely to occur using algorithms.’ As pattern, it is very useful to use algorithm to set up a certain rule to control the structure of designs. Moreover, applying algorithm to architectural designs may lead to spaces we had not even imagined at the beginning. It could be the way to go beyond intellect of designers. almond_and_the_bonfire_of_the_vanities.htm au/2009/10/serpentine-gallery-by-toyo-itocecil.html almond_and_the_bonfire_of_the_vanities.htm

Precedent - Tod’s Omotesando in Japan

Another example of algorithm design is Tod’s Omotesando in Japan. Ito controlled the grid by changing its scale and created a threedimensional surface. The top grid of the model is connected to the lower grid by a meshed sheet. The mesh distorted into complex grid. The complex grid follows the form of a rectangular box controlled by the algorithm. Any changes to the grid will also change the pattern of the building. This complex process can be done easily by computation.

A.3. PARAMETRIC MODELLING Parametric is the method for architects to explore more ideas and seek new direction for designs. Parametric is a ‘set of equations that explress a set of quantities as explicit functions of a number of independent variables, known as ‘ parameters’ (Wesisstein 2003, 2150). Parametric modelling can be done in a deferral strategy. After we have created the basic form of a model, we are able to modify and change the design later. This modelling feature allows architects to generate as many outcomes as possible and choose the most viable one to be the final design. ‘Parametric methods are very useful for subjecting uncertain situations to the rigors of a pre-defined and proven mathematical model. They can usefully embody a great deal of prior experience and are less biased that human thought processes alone.’1


Precedent The Bird’s Nest in Beijing

The Bird’s nest is created by parametric modelling. Similar to “Serpentine pavilion”, the structure of the Bird’s nest is constructed with rotated columns. These columns are rotated with its complex grid to form a unique space. The angle of the columns slant of the Bird’s nest depends on the physics of the building in terms of loads and force. Architects of Bird’s nest generated numbers of outcomes with different co umns arrangement. They eventually found out and used the one which fits its physics cond tion the most. As a parametric design, the architects can modify or change the algorithm of the Bird’s nest to create a new form structure for other use. The new form structure though is different from the official one, they all come from the same idea and concept. The new form structure of the Bird’s nest can be transposed into furniture or shoes. Here we can see the power of parametric modelling.

Precedent - The voussoir Cloud

The voussoir Cloud is also a parametric design. The geometry of the structure is panelled with triangles. Some of the triangles are open for sunlight. This parametric model creates a special space for people to relax under interesting light effect. The position of the triangles is set after a series of calculation. Architects have chosen the most efficient design through parametric method. The size and position of the triangles are related to its built environments.

A.4. ALGORITHM EXPLORATION • When the surface is built by a few circles, its shape is not clearly seen. •The shape becomes more obvious when more circles are added. •The surface becomes more concrete when the density of circles is high. •Grasshopper is able to control the number of grids very easily using its slider command.

More exploration using Arc and pipe components.

A.5. LEARNING OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOME We can take advantage of computation, use algorithm method to explore as many design possibilities as possible and choose the one which fits to the gateway project goal as the final outcome. Computation is an important process for the gateway project which we might work out unexpected result through computation. Every design can be a good design if no problems are found in the design. The problems which cause design failure could be space inefficient, choose of wrong material or obstruction for visual access. The role of architects is to solve these problems. However, these problems need to be solved by designers themselves through experience and the knowledge of architecture. It cannot be done by computation because computation is just a tool to aid architects technical problems. Parametric modelling is very useful process for the gateway project. We can generate a large number of outcomes and use the most interesting one as final design. This requires a lot of time to discuss with group mates to decide which one is best fit to the goal. Parametric deign cannot be copied easily by other designers because parametric model require explicit calculation to work out the detail. ‘Even after a model is created, other designers can’t easily modify the design because they don’t possess the knowledge about how it was created and the original design intent.’ (Parametric Technology Corporation, 2008) Therefore, we can take this advantage of parametric model; we might take a look of master works and learn what they have done and how they achieved the result.

PART B EOI 2 : Design approach

B1. Design Focus RTV Headquarters in Zurich by Oliver Dibrova

Our project is going to be a material efficient and light -weight geometric structure. The hardest thing to consider in this project is how we use less material to create an efficient structure with optimal volume. Material use is a very important step to be considered in the design. It determines the efficiency of a building in terms of overall area minimization and its ability to resist any weather condition on the proposed site. Since Wyndham City is in the west of Melbourne City, people will drive through Wyndham when they come to Melbourne. Therefore, Wyndham City project becomes the entrance and the image of Melbourne. The project should be designed with an aesthetic appearance and also provide a contemporary space for the drivers to experience. The project can be designed as a material efficient structure because this type structure can efficiently reduce material use for the building which reduce material cost. Minimal surface is material efficient structure generated by mathematical formula. It is a surface that locally minimizes its area with zero curvature. Minimal surface structure is the assembly of the repetition of small single nurf surfaces into a large continous surface. MInimal surface do not have constraints with the area of the site because of its continous infinite surface. Also, minimal surafce is a sustainable design, reduction of material use will reduce the amount of green house gases. As less material will be used, the weight of the structrue becomes less and thus it is easy for fabrication process. Using minimal surface for structures is a way not only to achieve material efficiency, but also to achieve structural efficiency and overall area minimization.

RTV Headquarters in Zurich by Oliver Dibrova

The RTV Headquarter is constructed with minimal surafce. Its continuous surface creates an organic structure which constructs optimal volume inside the building. Also, Oliver Dibrova created interesting pattern on the roof for skylight. This makes the design more aesthetic and interesting. The interior space of the Wyndham City project can be something similar to this where the structure is organic in form and sunlight can come in through overhead

“Minimal Complexity” project

“A macro-scaled modular cellular pattern emerges through symmetry that is infinitely expandable and open-ended while becoming differentiated at its edges. Ornament functions as a simultaneous expression of the whole and the part working in dynamic equilibrium”

The project “Minimal Complexity” is a good example of material efficient structure designed by Vlad Tenu. This minimal periodic structure is created with the repetition of only 16 different components. The structure is primarily constructed with small panels. These panels are assembled to be both the skin and the main structure which contribute material efficiency and also space efficiency. We should design visual access as well as shelters for sunlight and rain. The skin of the structure should be panelled with interesting pattern. This will create a contemporary space for people and allows communication. Also, we should consider portals of pedestrian, public transport and biking, making the design more viable and aesthetically appealling.

“Minimal Complexity” project by Vlad Tenu


Minimal Complexity, seems to encapsulate the Studio AIR spirit through its highly innovative use of digital design software and its use of the parametric design models utilising a minimal surface to generate complex form. Tenu’s sculpture had a great impact on the architectural discourse from its assembly in 2011. It utilises modular surfaces composed together to create another more complex surface. It then further demonstrates this by iteratively combining these complex surfaces in such a way as to produce an even more complex three-dimensional form which still remains, essentially, a single minimal surface. The actual form has a great deal of similarity to the Gateway Proposal, however, the project has taken this concept one stage further and iteratively combined the form to create one final and ultimately complex three-dimensional form.



As the Minimal Complexity Sculpture had such a profound effect on the architectural discourse from its 2011 construction, it has influenced form of the John McAslan + Partners 2012 redevelopment of King’s Cross Station. This is clear to see upon the visual analysis of the central feature within the terminus of the station. Considering the apparent perceived modernity of the minimal surface conept, it should be acknowledged how commonly occurring, and accepted, the form and surface are within society. As seen with the Entry Paradise Pavillion, the use of lighting provides an aesthetically interesting and visually captivating atmosphere for users.

It’s key to note how visually captivating the forms created utilising a minimal surface basis can be. Consider how these structures are made so efficiently and how aesthetically engaging they are within the environment they sit, it seems like the only appropriate choice for the Western Gateway Project. Wyndham City sought a Freeway Art Project which expressed a strong sense of longevity and innovation. With regards to innovation, the minimal surface has been quite frequently referred to as a precedent to influence modern architectural form. As these visually captivating forms exist on a microscopic form within nature , as well as on a macro scale, it intrigues human curiosity and provides a strange sense of relatability.

Above is Archipelago with the students interacting with the minimal surface structure playfully, as if its seemingly suggesting a playful interaction. Middle is the scale of the Archipelago compared to the human body. It seems to invite users to enter it and be engaged source:

We can see this through the Archipelago Pavillion by Chalmers University of Technology and RĂśhsska Museum of Design1. Although the pavillion itself is constructed from steel laser-cut steel sheets, its form resembles the naturally occuring minimal surface of a tree root. From the form of the Archipelago it can be seen how the efficiencies become apparent through the interdependencies of spatial areas within the minimal surface as shown in bottom right photo. source:

Regarding the minimal surface pavillion, the Entry Paradise Pavillion by LAVA is worth taking a look at. Once again, the designer looked into the microscopic scale in order to find a form for basis. The compostion afterwards, was less simple and had integrated digital design attributes toward the design and form. From this pavillion we can see the continued visual captivation of the minimal surface form and how the non-euclidean geometry involved seems to strongly affect the spatial interaction that the users have with the structure.

Top right is a blue-lit image of the Entry Paradise Pavillion which provides a very different phenomenological experience to the pink-lit image beneath. The concept of colour and lighting can play a big roll on the experience of the user, especially with a structure they cannot touch. pypi_b0608entrypavilion_919.jpg source:

The way in which the Western Gateway proposal seems to interact with the site, and the users of the cars, seeks to provide an interesting and dynamic experience. It may not physical force a particular type of interaction, but it provides an interaction that can be found nowhere else within Australia. This sense of exclusivity definitely expresses the importance of the phenomenological experience provided the minimal surface concept. Further exploring the phenomenological aspects, the lighting can really affect the mood and create a unique atmosphere. For example, the pink lighting illuminates the minimal surface and creates the sensation of bubblegum and having it stick to your boot or pulling it apart and the blue provides an underwater experience with coral and numerous sea critters surrounding. source:

B.2. Case Study 1.0

Exoskeleton Component

• • • • • •

These results are proportionally better than the other outcomes The node value and knuckle value are too high or too low for some outcomes The results can be improved by increasing the size of models so that we can tune the values more accurate The values cannot be tuned too high or too low or the outcomes will either disappear or overlapped Exoskeleton component can create light impact or makes the structure more aesthetic by changing the size of tubes Most of them can be used for decoration of art

I also chose the most successful result from each structure and then use Weaver Bird Frame component to create apertures for the outcome.

Voussoir clound script


Explorations on Voussoir Cloud project

B.3. Case Study 2.0 Tai Chung opera House

The Tai Chung opera House is an innovative project designed by Toyo Ito using the concept of minimal surface. The continous surface of this project contributes overall area minimization and structural efficiency. I was inspired by its interesting structure. I tried to use mesh box method to create structures similar to this project. I used Kangaroo plugin to relax the whole structure making the outcomes more smooth and aesthetic.

Kangaroo plugin and Mesh box method


Minimal Surface plugin and Mirrored method

The mesh box method is not very effective. When we used more boxes for the design, it took a l adding more boxes for the structure. Therefore, we decided to have another method. This metho corner.

long time to relax the outcomes. Also, the form of the mesh box design is boring which is just od can produce many interesting outcomes by changing the values of the sliders at the top left


As we want see more interesting variables, we used minimal surface component and mirror component to create more matrix. Every outcomes look aesthetic no matter what values I put in. Also, each outcome has its own quality. Therefore, we deicded to use this script for our project model.

B.4. Technique: Development

To make sure I am satisfaied with the script we have chosen, I also played with the Green void script.

Green Void method attempt

Also, we tried to replicate the outcomes using Morph tool. We tested the result using an outcome from mesh box method and an outcome from case study 1.0 and compare the them with the structure and connectivity.

Outcome from case study 1.0

Outcome from mesh box method

B.5. Technique: Prototypes



VLAD TENU MINIMAL SURFACE EXPLORATION Through the extruction of each of the mesh edges within the digital model (as shown top left), Tenu was able to create planar elements which would provide structural rigidity and retain the form of the minimal surface throughout his large-scale models3. This collection of work adds to this concept of material efficiency as it demonstrates the structural system employed into the production of a realistically assembled large-scale minimal surface. Of course these paper-prototypes do not express the physical characteristics required within an actual large-scale realisation, however, it is still important to take from Tenu’s prototypes the form retention and the apparent surface to emerge - without the use of surfaces to create it. This material efficiency is something that our model has also explored through physical modelling and it suggests for a reduction in the use of superfluous materials - significantly reducing material wastage. The bottom left image is an actualisation of the use of a simple triangular mesh; which is made into modular pieces and then cut and folded or mechanically fixed4. It exhibits captivating visual properties and the pattern emergence seems to be quite strong - and seemingly intentional. The main focus of this particular exercise was the exploration into the variety of functions such a form can have - ranging from architectural elements to furniture etc. It shows a different aesthetic to the the previous model and seems to express stronger fluidity throughout.

The image shows the King’s Cross Station’s Redeveloped Western Concord. The minimal surface does become apparent


The Western Concourse of the King’s Cross redevelopment is shown expressing the minimal surface concept as it connects the structure towards the ground.

Chandon marquee by PTW Architects2. Of course, the emphasis of the marquee at the time was a “bubbly” theme which was also addressing the key criteria of a ‘light’ feel.

The form generation of minimal surfaces through parametric modelling and digital deign software such as Rhino and Grasshopper have been trending internationally and have been emerging more frequently prior to the redevelopment.

This lightness is something that is explored by the model and it is found through the use of particular materials which possess these intrinsic qualities of ‘lightness’.

Minimal surfaces have been appearing at local Victorian Events, such as the Melbourne Cup of 2005 through the Moët &

The light feel which the Moët & Chandon marquee communicates so clearly is through the evident material efficiencies expressed through the structural form.

`Another concept that the Archipelago explores is the assmebly process involved with the minimal surfaces. source:

The bottm left photo demonstrates the strong functional and practical connection joints required to assemble such an intriquite architectural form. Although bulky and rigid, the joints are well concealed in hard-to-reach places within the pavillion - including the upper exterior of the surface, which seems to resemble an apple core. The top left image further shows the complexity of the geometry involved and how it seems to flow smoothly from one surface to the other, thus creating a smooth minimal surface. This concept of joinery has been dealt with in a slightly more elegant way by The model. source:

This is our group’s first prototype model. We tried to use wire mesh for the whole model because wire mesh has very good flexibility and we are satisfied with the outcome. The pieces are connected with the wire itself. Therefore, the joint section is not easy to see.

This is our group’s second prototype model. This time we used card paper. We created tabs using grasshopper and connected the pieces with those tabs. However, some tabs are exposed outside the model. Therefore, we are going to consider different joint which can be concealed in the model. Also, the joint should be designed to be able to support the whole model.

Joint of “Minimal Complexity”

B.6. Technique Proposal Minimal surfaces are generated through complex algorithmic geometry. Our project and approach explores minimal surface on a basis of repeating the minimal surfaces to generate and composing them in a way that they can be applied to a variety of parameters and still retain the same principle. The structure holds a particular value as it is self supporting and therefore the true design intensions are able to be fully expressed without the use of external supports. This approach allows for an holistic intension to be realised within the final outcome as the gateway expresses the volumetric occupancy in such an aesthetically captivating way, and with the use of such complex geometry, that it can be expressed in an experience for the users to stop and take a look. it came to the groups attention that the geometry could be considered highly simplified in comparison to other minimal surface projects. However, as we considered the scale of the gateway we took into consideration the amount of time that the user would be allowed to experience the architecture and so as a pragmatic approach the outcome seemed to undergo a “complexity diet“ if you will and so explain the final outcome. There were issues with the panel connections and materiality of the project as the conventional joints inhibited many explorative and creative geometries. The group iteratively progressed toward a combination of mesh panels with firm and rigid edges to allow for fixing to occur on a practical sense.

B.7. Algorithmic Sketches

Draw a tectrohedro in Rhino Give name for each line Open grasshopper and create six curve component Each component refers to each single line

Top Back Central Left

Top Left

Top Right Central Right

Central Front

Create mid-points

Create end points

Use line component to connect the mid points and all the points created by “Eval Curve� component

Create end points on the top left curve and top right curve

Use Evaluate curve component to put a point at specific part of the curve. “t “ value is a curve domain parameter. Right click on Evaluate curve component and choose “reparametarize” and then change the domain of the curve to “0 to 1”.

Use Evaluate curve component to set a movable point on every line

InterCurve creates curves connected by three points

A loft surface is created by Minimal surface component

Use Plane 3 Point component to create a plane for each side and these planes are used for mirrorring the the object

Use mirror component to create mirrorred objects

Top right piece (according to the diagram below)

Centre of rotation point

Top left piece (according to the diagram below)

Use “RoT3D” component to deplicate the two top pieces to the bottom along the centre of rotation point

Right click on “C“ value of “Rot3D” and enter “PI”

The centre rotation point is the end point of Central Right curve

PLane 1

PLane 2

Create two plans along x and y aixs

Use z unit component for x value for both planes

• • • •

Use x unit component for y value for plane 1 Mirror the object twice according to the orientatio of the planes

Use Bounding Box tool to union all the pieces

Put the union object into the twister box using Morph tool

Use cross reference component to replicate the pieces


We tried to use three planes to create a tilt


Run the script again and then obtained the most successful portion from the tilt structure

B.8. Learning Objectives and Outcomes

Trim the superfluous part of the model

“Less is more”, we will keep modifying our model by trimming unnecessary parts of the model. After that, we will consider the use of joint for fabrication since joint is a very important component to be installed on the model. Joint is not only used to fix pieces of a structure, it will also effect the appearance of the model if they expose outside the model. Therefore, we will consider how to conceal the joint or use smaller but effective joint for our project. After the research for this project, I have learnt how architects design things with their knowledge and theories. We have to consider the material use beore construction to reduce green house gases. We aim to design sustanable deisgn not only for today’s community, but also for the generation in the future. I have learnt a lot about materialisation (fabrication and assembly). I found that Grasshopper is a strong program which allows architects to create abstract designs. Another powerful function of grasshopper is able to compose our own script for unrolling, creating tabs, and labelling objects. This powerful function helps us to ease the design process. However, I still have difficulty to understand the logic of grasshopper script. It takes time for use to learn. Once we understand the concept of grasshopper, we will have more control of our designs and we will find out mistakes quickly during design process.

REFERENCES Archipelago fig 1.1 Archipelago fig 1.2*XWuDwZicnamlzmK7DkrJ*7ew0NwGz/IMG_3894.JPG Archipelago fig 1.3

Minimal Complexity fig 3.5 Minimal Complexity fig 3.6 Minimal Complexity fig 3.7 Minimal Complexity fig 3.8

Archipelago fig 1.4 - 1.6

Minimal Complexity VLAD TENU early 1 - 2

King’s Cross fig 2.1 Kings-Cross-2-%C2%A9-Hufton-and-Crow.jpg King’s Cross fig 2.2 In_Studio/2012.05.09_kings_cross_station/photos/kings_ cross_21_%C2%A9_phil_adams.jpg King’s Cross fig 2.3 Kings-Cross-22-%C2%A9-Phil-Adams.jpg Minimal Complexity fig 3.1 Minimal Complexity fig 3.2 Minimal Complexity fig 3.3 Minimal Complexity fig 3.4



C.1. Design Concept Comments from the crit jury:



Some parts of the model are unnecessary which hanging out of the structure. It might cause collapse to the model due to the gravity. Trim the superfluous parts of our design to achieve an efficient structure which minimizes the surface and material use. Then we consider a joint system for the actual installation which is applicable in real life because tab joints are only applicable for our proposed model, easing the whole fabrication process. Consider the significant idea of the structure. Also, looking at the model as different portals: portal for sunlight, portal for money and portal for drivers.

Changes to the design concepts:

Remove unnecessary parts:

We removed unnecessary parts to achieve structural efficiency and create a better visual impact. Then we investigated a applicable joint system that fits our model. After that, we created perforations into our model making it more interesting.

• Removed some parts of the models, making the model not too massive • The structure of he model became more efficient • After removing the superfluous parts, it provides a more rigid structure

Portal for sunlight (Perforations) and exploration on structure: Our group consider to explore perforation to extend the possibilities of our design. Perforation allows sunlight shine through the structure, making the model a strong sense of presence. Also, we found that some faces of our model are blocked by anothers. it might be difficult for people to view the complete design. Perforations allow people to view the structure more thoroughly .

Structural efficiency:

Shadings and patterns: Perforations also add a spectacular visual effect to the structure when sunlight cast into it. This effect enhances when sunlight cast into two overlaping perforating components, it will create a unique pattern that evolves with time, create a ever-changing visual impact to users, making the structure even more eye-catching to the users. However, beside adding the strong visual impact to the structure, our team also want to control to amount of this shading effect so that the shades patterning effect do not take over the focus of the structure, as we want to keep everything to a minimal.

Removal of triangular pieces for perfaration will ease the weight of the whole structure. it makes the structure lighter which increase the stability of the structure. By placing the perforation pieces on the upper part of the structure, the the structure takes less wind-load because the surface area is less after removing pieces for perforation. Therefore, we can use thinner material for the upper parts. • Using thinner material also means less materials are used • achieve better material efficiency • We divided the material into three thickness zones according to the height of the corresponding part • Create a material efficient structure while preserving its rigid, sturdy character.

Location of the structure: We decided to locate the installation on Site A because Site A appears to be slightly higher up on the ground, making the structure more visible even in a far distance. It creates a strong presence of the entrance between Melbourne City and Wyndham city. Also, the shape of our design is taken from the topography of Site A. The structure will be orientated to the north and south bound users of the Princess Freeway, creating a stronger visual impact.

Shadow Cast



When Passing Through


Preventing Vehicles From Speeding Providing Visual Pleasures Realisation with Design Theme

Potential Expectation

exciting, eye catching installation

Material Efficiency

Generating Better Social Behaviour

Responsive Architecture

Project Requirement

Social Representation

Social Refinement

Response to Surrounding Context

enriching the municipality

Serve the Needs of Community

Reformatting the Previous Condition

Minimal Surface Approaching

Response to User’s Experience

Space Optimization

Response to Client’s Requirement

Learning From Nature

Contrast Approach to the Flat Site

C.2. Tectonic Elements • The realisation of the Yusakuji joint is driven by material efficiency and made of offcuts of the steel panels used for the production • These panels are held together by rivets


• With the joints of the panels to be flush with the perpendicular panel fixed to it, the interior joint (or bracket) will be of a shorter length than the exterior bracket - with the bend occurring about the centre of the bracket.

C.3. Final Model

• Set layout colour for each model component DF from an application thatthe is not licensed to print to novaPDF printer ( • Name components

• Spread the components and placed them in an organised order

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• Use grasshopper script to unroll the based components (solid)

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• Set the distance of the strips • set the width of tabs

• We tried to unroll the apertured components with grasshopper strips • However, the script didn’t work for aperture components • the only way we could do was to join every pieces manually

• However, the result was disappointed Then we selected the triangles pairly in a row for each strip and join them together • The triangles overlapped You created this PDF from an application that is not licensed to print to novaPDF printer (

• The reason of the unexpected result was that we used the wrong method to create strips • Each triangle in a strip should only have two adjacent triangles • more than two adjacent triangles will cause overlapped problem

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to print to novaPDF printer (

• then we selected the triangles pairly in a row for each strip and join them together • we created tabs for each strip taking the shape of its adjacent strip • these tabs are very useful to follow the form of our design • these tabs are used to create a better form of our 1:20 model

print to novaPDF printer (

Correct method

Method caused overlapped

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Fabrication process

Photography • Perforation of the upper part of the model creates interesting light effect under sunlight like the sun shines through branches • The curvy structure of the model create light and shadow

C.4. Algorithmic Sketches

To make the design more interesting, we created apertures on the upper part of the modTherefore, we decided to use triangular apertures for our model because triangles are able el. We attempted to create rectangular apertures for the model. However, some apertures to follow any shape of an object. near curves became rhombus.

C.5. Learning Objectives and Outcomes Throughout this semester, I realized that the concept of discourse of architecture is actually about how the designing project relates to its culture. We should consider every element for the design before making any decisions. Culture can be represented by its historical heritage or local feature. Therefore, we can consider how to apply these elements to our designing project and make it artistically aesthetic. I chose ‘learning from nature’ to be my discourse because nature is everywhere. Apart from nature, I brought out the relationship of Melbourne city and Wydham city. To do this, our group chose minimal surface as the topic for the designing project. The continuous curve of minimal surface represents social connectivity. I created apertures for the structure which made it like branches. When the sun comes, it will project interesting light pattern. The combination of the apertures and the continuous curve symbolize the relationship of nature and a city. I have learnt many useful computation techniques for design. Grasshopper plug-in for rhino helped me to develop abstract geometric designs. Our group gateway project was an abstract geometric design. By watching the online tutorial, I learnt how to use different grasshopper components to generate a minimal surface. Minimal surface indeed is an interesting project to be considered to minimize the use of area. However, it might not be an efficient installation for this freeway project as cars will not stay around the installation more than 2 seconds and also, drivers are not allowed to enter the site area. However, I found that minimal surface can be used to project interesting pattern. When sunlight casts into two overlaping perforating components, it will create a unique pattern that evolves with time. Also, I investigate a lot information about minimal surface. The feature of minimal surface is known as area minimization and material waste minimization. Also, minimal surface is able to structurally self-support without extra columns and beams. Its aesthetic and innovative form became one of the reasons that our group attempt to achieve. From the previous exercises, I know the benefits using grasshopper to generate parametric design. We solved many problems and improved our design a lot using grasshopper when we could not do it with traditional methods. Another benefit using grasshopper is able to reduce the time consumed on building a complex model. It takes only few steps to create

or change a complex model. Using traditional method, it might take large amount of time to repeat the same step thousands times to achieve expected results. Also, I have learnt that models created in rhino might be less applicable in real life. We need to consider the availability of material in reality, for instance the length of the actual material. Before fabrication, we should consider the size of the model. The final model might have to be cut into smaller pieces if the actual dimension of the material is smaller.

CFI yun wa lai 531600 final submission  
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