A research project by CITA , Knippers Helbig Engineers and Trebyggeriet.no
Lamella Flock investigates new possibilities of creating freeform structures in wood. Where this is at the moment achieved through the use of resource heavy production techniques using glue lam, complex joints, and 5-axis milling our research shows that freeform surface structures can be constructed by the use of straight beam elements. To achieve this we have utilized the principles of the traditional Zollinger lamella construction in combination with a non standardized production. Challenges arise from the complex interdependency of beam elements in the structure, and the non-linear relationship between requirements of structure, material and production. We propose an approach that utilizes principles of self-organization. This led to the development of generative digital tools that are informed by the physical 1:1 output including structural analysis, production and material knowledge. These constraints loop back into the structures geometrical setup.
Through the integration of this recursive feedback level the projects discussion is widened to the question how computational tools can help designers in the future to deal within an evergrowing amount of complexity and integrate bottom-up design approaches.
The project contributes to the future use of Wood as one of the few truly renewable building materials - in terms of both materiality and contemporary digital production process. Our research has shown that complex wood structures can be efficiently made and assembled using short straight beams. The key was the combination of traditional wood techniques with advanced computational methods.
Lamella Flock was exhibited as part of the digital.material exhibition at R.O.M Gallery for Art and Architecture, Oslo in May 2010. The exhibition was kindly supported by the Nordic Culture Foundation.
Consultancy / support
Hundegger Maschinenbau Gmbh
Prof. Christoph Gengnagel/ TU-Berlin Chair of structural engineering
The project was published in several papers and articles. An overview and further information is given in this pdf