Design and construction of curved support structures with repetitive elements
In his talk, Eike Schling will present a variety of architectural studies which aim to construct gridshells from repetitive parts. For this purpose, he introduces a theoretical framework that enables a systematic design and an analysis of the repetitive quality of doubly curved grid structures. The key is to consider both geometric as well as constructive criteria to allow for a repetitive fabrication of parts.
Eike has extensively studied such “repetitive structures” in both his research and teaching. His examples utilize various methods: Through digital sensitivity studies he investigates the impact of specific geometric parameters; in creative, experimental design studios, he conducts ‘research by design’ to develop modular shells; and finally, the theories of differential geometry are implemented to deduce the morphology of smooth networks.
Eikes studies not only reveal fundamental principles and dependencies within repetitive design, but also show the great potential and aesthetics of such structures. A novel design method – asymptotic networks on minimal surfaces – allows for the construction of strained gridshells from straight lamellas and orthogonal nodes. Construction of a prototypical structure, the Asymptotic Gridshell, was completed in Munich in 2017.
Bio: Eike Schling is an architect and assistant professor at the Chair for Structural Design at the Technical University in Munich. Since 2008 he has worked as a computational designer at Auer+Weber in Munich and PLP Architecture in London. This experience fostered his interest in the design and planning of façades and structures with complex geometries. Since 2012 he has been teaching parametric methods, architectural geometry and structural behavior with the clear goal of enabling fabrication-aware design. Eike completed his doctorate “Repetitive Structures” in 2018 with distinction. His research investigates the potentials of designing gridshells with repetitive elements based on a holistic consideration of geometric parameters and constructive criteria.