An air-filled membrane structure room sprayed by robotics
Here shows the outcome of the workshop I participated in at one of the DigitalFUTURES summer work camps in 2021. This workshop aims to discuss how to build a house by spraying fast-setting polymer materials on the surface of the inflatable membrane with robotics and discuss a method that integrates multiple construction technologies and design software.
The shape of the air membrane is determined by a handheld 3D scanner, and the thickness of the structure is calculated in real-time. We use 3D structure software to determine the variable section strength of the same material, and study the accuracy of
the mechanical arm construction method. Through parametric design, the possibility of user-customized shapes is investigated. The physical properties of building materials such as polyurethane density, material composition, and setting the time on spraying construction were studied.
In the group on pattern design, I explored the possibility of constructing a spray path with parametric approach. I started with digital pattern design, while my teammates in the construction group filled the membrane room with air. After that, we do the on-site verification and observation to develop the design. The air membrane would change shape due to the changing air pressure.
Taking into account the structural characteristics of spraying technology and aesthetics, the images below are two final patterns for sphere and water drop air membranes.
After several testing of the curve tension with kangaroo simulations, I chose the one with a gradient of a wavy pattern. This design satisfies the requirements for the bottom tamping of the air-filled sprayed pavilion. In order to support the sphere itself properly, our team started spraying from the bottom up, with the bottom a lot thicker than the upper part. The overlapping components can stabilize the sphere and decrease the shape morphing in strong liquid spraying.
This design can meet the requirements of the behavior of robotic arm. On the meantime, it gives an appropriate time and temperature to initiate a chemical reaction when spraying from bottom to top.