Categories
Matthew Parker Vera Parlac

Agile Spaces

Date: 2013
Client: n/a
Primary Investigator: Vera Parlac
Collaborators: n/a
Project Budget: Withheld
Research Assistants/ Project Team: Matt Parker
Sponsors: University of Calgary Seed Grant
Publications: “Agile Spaces” published in the Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Conference of the Association for Computer Aided Design in Architecture (ACADIA): Adaptive Architecture, University of Waterloo, Cambridge, Ontario, 2013
Agile Spaces/ Iconic/ SKiN“, Responsive Architecture Research Team V. Parlac and B. Kolarevic, in Facing the Future, Exhibition Book, 2nd International Scientific Conference and Exhibition, Gallery of Science and Technology, Belgrade, Serbia, 2014

The backbone of this project is a kinetic material system actuated by shape memory alloy (SMA) springs. The material system is developed both as a physical and digital prototype. Its behavior is examined at a physical level and the findings are used to digitally simulate behavior of the larger system. The system utilizes a lattice structure and its structural behavior. It relies on elastic deformation of the constituent members, which allows the forces of bending to be distributed along a wider region of the surface. The system becomes kinetic when the SMA spring actuators are activated. Activation of the springs introduces tension into the lattice members that causes change in the geometry of the lattice cells. The result of this is bending of the wider region of the surface. The lattice can be actuated in the lower or upper zone. Depending on the zone of actuation the lattice deforms and moves upwards or downwards. The contraction of the SMA spring produces a tension in the middle layer of the lattice, which manifests through the deformation of the cell structure, bending an entire region of the lattice. Strategic placement of the actuators across the lattice produces accumulated bending effect and deforms the entire surface.

Categories
Adam Onulov Richard Cotter Seed Grant Todd Freeborn Vera Parlac

SKIN: Soft Kinetic Network

Date: 2012
Client: n/a
Primary Investigator: Vera Parlac
Collaborators: n/a
Project Budget: Withheld
Research Assistants/ Project Team (Role): Richard Cotter,
Todd Freeborn, Adam Onulov
Publications:Surface Dynamics: From Dynamic Surface to Agile Spaces ” in Proceedings of the 2013 ASCAAD Conference: DIGITAL CRAFTING Virtualizing Architecture and Delivering Real Built Environment, Jeddah, March 2014
Agile Spaces/ Iconic/ SKiN“, Responsive Architecture Research Team V. Parlac and B. Kolarevic, in Facing the Future, Exhibition Book, 2nd International Scientific Conference and Exhibition, Gallery of Science and Technology, Belgrade, Serbia, 2014
Surface Change: Information, Matter and Environment ” in Proceedings of the 2013 CAADRIA International Conference of Computer-Aided Architecture Design Research in Asia: OPEN SYSTEMS, Singapore, May 15-18, 2013
Surface Change” in Proceedings of the 2012 ACSA International Conference: CHANGE, Architecture, Education, Practice, Barcelona, Spain, June 20-21, 2012

Project Description: The SKiN project consists of small-scale prototypes of an adaptive kinetic surface capable of spatial modulation and response to environmental stimuli. The Soft Kinetic Network (SKiN) surface is organized around the network (Soft Kinetic Grid) of embedded “muscle” wires that change shape under electric current. The network of wires provides for a range of motions and facilitates surface transformations through soft and muscle-like movement. The material system developed around the wire network is variable and changes its thickness, stiffness, or permeability within its continuous composite structure. The variability in the material system enables it to (a) behave differently within surface regions; (b) vary the speed and degree of movement; (c) vary surface transparency; and (d) provide other levels of performance such as capture of heat produced by the muscle wire and distribution of heat within the surface regions.

Categories
Adam Onulov Richard Cotter Todd Freeborn Vera Parlac

Soft Kinetic Grid

Date: 2011
Client: n/a
Primary Investigators: Vera Parlac
Collaborators: n/a
Project Budget: Withheld
Research Assistants/ Project Team: Richard Cotter,
Todd Freeborn, Adam Onulov
Sponsors: University of Calgary Seed Grant
Publications: “Responsive Architecture Project: “Soft” Kinetic Grid” in Project Catalog of the 31st Annual Conference of the Association for Computer Aided Design in Architecture (ACADIA), University of Calgary, Calgary, 2011

This project is driven by an interest in adaptive systems in nature and a desire to explore the capacity of built spaces to respond dynamically and adapt to changes in the external and internal environment. The Soft Kinetic Grid project examines the capacity of the shape memory alloy to act as a point source and as a linear source of actuation of the grid. The SMA is embedded into a silicon tubing diagrid in order to test the extent and the nature of the grid movement. To better understand the gradient of movement of the actuated grid, the grid was restricted by anchoring joint points to a flat surface in a variety of configurations. Depending on the configuration, the behavior ranged from expanding cells to vertical movements of the grid’s regions. The Soft Kinetic Grid provided an important groundwork of the development of the SKiN project.