High-Performance Facade Panels


The project is a three-year collaboration between the LID, DIALOG architects and Ferguson Corporation to develop high-performance façade panels with a specific focus on using them for retrofitting the Castell Building located in downtown Calgary. The first year was focused on analyzing the envelope and developing a generative, form-finding design and fabrication workflow. The generative process is focused on integrating thermal and digital fabrication parameters to generate high-performance, customized façade panels for retrofitting. In addition to solar energy-based performance metrics, the developed workflow incorporates geometric parameters constituting the form and an evaluation system for multi-material façade panels. Fabrication parameters that consider planarity, compound curvature, member length, connection nodes and materiality for robotic fabrication are also included in the simulation . The compression steel nodes are fabricated by our partner Ferguson Corporation. Machinic operations such as robotic glulam bending and milling are part of the fabrication process developed at LID. An ad-hoc bending machine based on electric linear actuators was digitally and physically developed. The design to fabrication workflow was tested by fabricating a 1:1 façade prototype during the summer of 2021.


Principal Investigator Alicia Nahmad

Graduate Research Assistants Matt Walker, JoLynn Yen, Youness Youssefi

Partners DIALOG Architects Ferguson Corporation

Funding Agency MITACS Accelerate