MArch GAD, Bartlett London

Heterogeneus Lattice 

Tutors: Philippe Morel, Thibault Schwartz, Kwuan Lee
Team: Chiara Zaccagnini, Ipek Kuzu, Sandra Sifaki 

“The discipline of architecture has gone through something of a metamorphosis in recent years. There is evidence of a clear shift both in the nature of debates within architecture and in its relationship with other academic disciplines.” 1

The project investigates stochastic behaviours and whether they can be used to create unique engineered concrete structures. The model of natural cellular structures such as foam was used as a starting point for this research.

The project challenges the modernist minimal surface idea of concrete shell by defining a new concept for shell configuration: unique lights geometrically intricate lattice such as we found in foam. Shells are structures that cover maximum area without any subdivision and openings. The thick shell will act as structural element as well as a tool for design: such as creation of subdivisions and openings.

The understanding of the cellular structure has driven the project to explore the relation of solid and void, as well as blurring the architectural idea of internal and external space. The out coming structure is the result of a reverse conceptual method such as it forms around its own voids: packed spheres system.

Simulations allowed observing the packing self-arrangement. Packing systems can have infi- nite arrangements and dynamics. However simulations revealed that self – organized pack- ing is a system that works upon performance such as: when the balls fall into a container they will naturally find their way to build their optimum jammed structure. Balls were set as soft bodies, rubber balloons filled with air, and thrown in to same size boxes. The system was studied mainly during the liquid phase of the cast.

The elasticity and variability of this casting system allow the designer to use dynamic poten- tials in the cast, while also creating a cellular cast.