Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Grid Shell

By Sufiy Momoh

Architects are taught to work with the basic walls and roofs. If architects design frames to no specific dimensional or shape restriction to solve problems and involve some environmental factors, spaces would be more amplified and better perceived. Architects can do this by creating something sort of like an unrestricted shell. This can be described as a frame with the potential to do a lot of problem solving on its own and also act as a strong design element. These types of structures can be designed to remain structurally sound and stable without obstructing the solution and resultants of the factors taken into consideration by understanding the possible pressure point of the structure. "High strength and rigidity of modern filaments, which ensures good weight efficiency of composite grid structures consisting of edges reinforced in the longitudinal direction, are combined with a relatively low shear rigidity, which necessitates taking into account shear strains" (Azarov 2010). By doing this one can end up with a structure that can be well described as a freeform shape in architecture. These shells can also be described as a template to the solutions, literally.
Architecture in most cases should be allowed to be freeform instead of the boxes and circles we put things in these days. It should be left to solve problems, react to limits and have the solution in the exact position where it works best to make the space a better place to be in and experience. With that being said the various solutions should be able to link up together in a way that they act as a whole system. Architects should be disturbed less about how to use walls to connect these solutions and just let them flow together. There is really nothing wrong in using walls and flat horizontal roofs but in most cases you find out that the solutions and results due to the various variables have been moved around so they can fit theses geometry that is the walls and the roofs.
Freeform architecture goes beyond just buildings; there have been several structures which follow the same concept. Referencing a well-recognized architect like Zaha Hadid; a lot of people look at this type of architecture as futuristic. Yes, it can be described as that because it’s pushing the boundaries of today's architecture and allow itself to flow as a system with little or no restrictions to the boundaries. This could also be described as an unrestricted shell in the cases where it acts like a fa├žade of a roof shed over a certain area and in some cases it acts as both facades and roof sheds.
A creation of just a freeform shell would not be the solution but one that actually does function beyond its looks. Pushing the boundaries on what these grid shells can be done one can consider these shells to serve as templates for sustainable solutions such as solar panels thereby having certain parts of the templates orientated in ways they can get full potential of the suns energy. They can also serve as templates for other sustainable solutions such as heliostats. These heliostats can reflect light into darker areas within the region to brighten things up in those areas. Another possible function of this grid shell is to let them function as trellis which can act as a very good design element. The potential of these types of structures can go on and on.
The grid is a structure that derives its strength from double curvature. A couple of things to look into when implementing something like this is how cost effective it will be. In order to do this, exploring several materials that would be structurally sound would be a good idea. Looking at materials ranging from different types of woods to different kind of steel materials would be an example of this. Exploring various anchoring methods to make this structure work in a very feasible way would also be something to look into.

Spaces are strongly impacted by the architecture surrounding it but an architectural piece that in cooperate exterior natural factors into the space can make the space be perceived in various intriguing ways

No comments:

Post a Comment