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Fibers and Fabrics
Exciting Prospectives for Architecture and Construction
Category No. 5: Composite Structure
Technische University Wien, Usterreich
Tensegrity Tube Bridge
The combination of cable-tensioned steel-section compression rings, supported and stabilised by tension-stressed (Kevlar-reinforced) membrane strips running diagonally in two furrows along the outside surface is impressive and logical.
The membrane strips, however, are not only a clear constructional component but serve as an open roof for the bridge walkway without turning it into a closed tube for the user.
The intermittent surface architecture of the bridge fabric provides wind protection and elegant spiralling surface for illumination. It offers the user a wealth of surprising and changing views of what is going on in below, alongside and around the bridge. Walking over the bridge can be a sensuous experience. The jury liked the experience of moving along and through the undulating and dynamic form of the bridge.
The presentation of the design's creative and structural elements in the model is an impressive success. The model especially is of a high quality. A very high standard of presentation.
Tree-house in the English Garden, Munich
The project ideally expresses free formed spatial architecture achievable with a grid shell and fabric, acting together in composite. The location of the building at tree-top level relates ideally to a park or forest setting.
The amoeba-like shape, which is present not only in the basic plan but also in the visual aspect of the building is well suited to a park with its arrangements of trees and plants. The house is raised to tree-top level on rectilinear, arbitrarily vertical or diagonal supports, which bear the shell of the building in an irregular, unpatterned manner, allowing it to merge with the trees of the park and giving observers or visitors no hint of its true identity until they are quite near, directly in front, or underneath it.
The necessary staircases and lifts do not disturb this impression.
Roofing or enveloping the supporting grid-shell structure with a textile membrane skin provides the interior spaces with a weather-skin, climatic envelope and transparent roof all at the same time. The lightness of the construction is further emphasised in this way. The changing translucency of the envelope varies with the use of the rooms inside.
A clear and high-quality presentation.
North Africa Shelter Project
This project is a portable, adaptable, flexible shelter using curved wooden ribs as the load-bearing elements and the translucent textile membrane to brace the rods. The membrane serves as a cover and partition element.
The details are well resolved in model form.
Combined with its collapsibility, which comes from the detailed design of the base of the wooden ribs, together with the way the structure is assembled, this design is without doubt a well thought-out solution for a flexible house which can be used under a variety of conditions and environmental influences, and also offers a wide variety of ways for using the space inside.
The design exploits the unusually shaped roof, which projects out to one side, as a natural means of interior ventilation and uses a twin-layered membrane between or over the ribs as an outside skin for thermal insulation or protection against heat; both are convincing and effective solutions that make it ideally suited to the structural and physical demands of the house in arid and hot climatic regions.
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