Robotic Fabrication Workflows for Environmentally Driven Facades

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Virginia Tech

Even though computer simulation of environmental factors and manufacturing technologies have experienced a fast development, architectural workflows that can take advantage of the possibilities created by these developments have been left behind and architectural design processes have not evolved at the same rate. This research presents design to fabrication workflows that explore data driven design to improve performance of facades, implementing for this purpose computational tools to handle environmental data complexity and proposes robotic fabrication technologies to facilitate façade components fabrication.

During this research three design experiments were conducted that tested variations on the design to fabrication workflow, approaching the flow of information in top-down and bottom-up processes. Independent variables such as material, environmental conditions and structural behavior, are the framework in which workflow instances are generated based on dependent variables such as geometry, orientation and assembly logic. This research demonstrates the feasibility of a robotic based fabrication method informed by a multi-variable computational framework plus a simulation evaluator integrated into a design to fabrication workflow and put forward the discussion of a fully automated scenario.

Design computation, Design simulation, Design fabrication