Repetitive Structures

Type: Dissertation [summa cum laude]
Titel: Repetitive Structures
Design and construction of curved support structures with repetitive parameter
Year: 2018
Authors: Eike Schling,
DOI: 10.14459/2018md1449869
Advisors: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rainer Barthel, Prof. Dr. Helmut Pottmann
Office: Technische Universität München, Chair of Structural Design

This thesis investigates doubly curved grid structures with the goal to simplify their fabrication. For this purpose, we examine networks with constant geometric parameters, and describe their potentials for design and construction.
A holistic theory of “repetitive structures” is established, which takes into account both geometric and constructive criteria. This allows us to investigate individual parameters in order to create identical building parts. The theory is used to uncover principles of form and structure, and develop a novel method to design and construct elastically formed gridshells. The work combines theories from differential geometry with knowledge from architecture and structural engineering and thus gains new insights for modern shell design.
Based on a review of scientific publications and built examples, a theoretical framework is created to analyse and design repetitive structures. First, we apply this theory to existing structures, and generate an overview of current and future possibilities of parameter repetition. Next, we investigate the interdependence between surface, network and parameters within inductive studies. Through the prototypical design and fabrication of experimental structures, we examine the elastic deformation of building parts as a constructive strategy to achieve repetition.
In a deductive study, the parameters of curvature are related to the deformation behaviour of individual beams. Based on this dependency, a design method is developed, which utilizes the properties of asymptotic curves on a minimal surface. This method provides the geometric condition to construct a doubly curved grid from exclusively straight lamellas and orthogonal nodes.
Finally, the method is implemented in an architectural case study:
The practical challenges and advantages of repetitive structures are experienced through the planning process, the construction progress, and the load-bearing behaviour of the “Asymptotic Gridshell”.

Technische Universität München
Fakultät für Architektur
Lehrstuhl für Tragwerksplanung
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rainer Barthel

Arcisstraße 21
80333 München

Eike Schling
Repetitive Structures
Design and construction of curved support structures with repetitive parameter

München, November 2018

About eikeschling

Dr.-Ing. | Architect BYAK Assistant Professor in Architectural Structures The University of Hong Kong

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: