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Flexous Filaments at Ars Electronica Center


Flexous Filaments by Philipp Hornung is a robotically fabricated, wooden, hybrid light-weight structure, which was developed as part of his Diploma thesis at Studio Zaha Hadid, Institute of Architecture at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, with the support of Robotic Woodcraft.

The project implements a multi-layered design process, taking material-, fabrication- and assembly properties as well as constructional and structural aspects into account and was applied in form of a pavillion. A network of dynamically shaped, co-acting beams consisting of several interlocking developable single curved panels are forming a double curved space. All parts are machined from thin, 4mm birch plywood, incorporating the formative and structural working finger-tenon-joints as well as all constructional details. When being assembled, the panels snap in place and interlock reciprocally when being bent to the predefined curvature and thus form the intended shape.

The entire process was designed on a parametric workflow including digital design, structural analysis, detailing, optimized nesting and generation of machine code. To verify the assigned research qualities, a full scale prototype was realized within three days, forming a tremendous arch, weighing just 25kg and spanning more than six meter. As part of the Creative Robotics exhibition, Flexuous Filaments was exhibited at the Ars Electronica Center alongside exhibits from the University for Arts and Design Linz as well as JKU Linz.


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