About Romain Mesnil

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So far Romain Mesnil has created 9 blog entries.

Composite materials for gridshells

Description of the research
The question of which materials for elastic gridshells is at the roots of the development of these structures at the Navier laboratory, but things actually came out the other way round. Historically, the expertise of the laboratory was material science and we were looking for “taylor made” applications for composites materials, for […]

Optimal gridshell meshing

Description of the research

Elastic gridshells are usually transformed from a flat configuration to their final three dimensional form. In their final form, the stresses in the bars could be very high due to the curvature of the bars. In this research project different strategies were used to optimise the mesh in order to minimise the […]

Envelopes of gridshells

Description of the research
Membrane skin

Along the years, we explored different solutions for the covering of elastic gridshells. The first prototypes and significant constructions from the Navier laboratory were covered with stretched membranes. Tensile structures are subject to tight tolerances, and it was crucial to be able to predict the deformed geometry of gridshells. For that reason, […]

Design and construction of gridshells

Description of the research

The gridshells built by the Navier laboratory are made of a flat composite grid deformed elastically to obtain the shape desired. The design of the gridshell is based on many numerical simulations.

Design of a gridshell
At the beginning, a desired rounded shape is proposed by an architect. A first reflexion is necessary, to know if the shape proposed is […]

Stability of gridshells

Description of the research
The buckling of gridshells is of practical interest for engineers who want to assess the safety and reliability of structures. Some post-buckling analysis have been applied to the gridshell of the Solidays festival. They demonstrate that these structures have a ductile behaviour, even with the assumption of accidental yield of some members  (Tayeb […]

Fabrication-aware design

Free-form surfaces with planar facets

The covering of free-form shapes with planar panels has been an active topic of research since the 1980’s. Jörg Schlaich and Hans Schober introduced surfaces of translations in 1989. This method allows the covering of complex shapes with planar quadrangles. Triangular panels are always planar but are more complex to construct […]

Deployable structures

Description of the research
The aim of deployable structures for shading applications is to reduce the energy consumption of buildings by adapting their form and orientation to regulate the heat gains. The developing of elastic deformation patterns with large displacements and the use of responsive materials for actuation can outperform classical manual and motorised systems (venetian […]

Nexorades and reciprocal structures

Description of the research
Systems consisting of beams mutually supporting each other have been known for centuries and numerous illustrations of such structural systems. For example, during the medieval ages, the French architect Villard de Honnecourt provided a solution based on a mutually supporting frame for the problem of covering a space with beams shorter than […]

Explorations in Nexorades

Description of the research
Nexorades are simple to built and assemble but the bending moment generated by the engagement length limit the structural potential of theses structures. Two strategies were investigated. The first strategy was to develop the concept of creating a double layer system in order to increase the structural depth. The second strategy was […]