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rapid prototyping | contour crafting January 14, 2010, 1:56 pm Filed under: Academia, Fabrication, Research, Technology

For this semesters Robotic Fabrication in Architecture course our team will be exploring foam contour crafting techniques using Tcaups KUKA 6-axis industrial mill. Precedents for this technique have been

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under development since last fall, however similar processes used in concrete contour crafting have been explored for the past couple of years, most notably in the R&Sie(n) project, Ive Heard About for more info on external related contour crafting articles see USC Craft webpage. Leave a Comment

kuka | milling i January 13, 2010, 8:27 pm Filed under: Fabrication, Technology

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6-axis robotic milling of log at Taubman School of Architecture at the University of Michigan. Leave a Comment

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Clip of a research project in Namibia filling a discarded termite mound with plaster of paris and washing the mud away to reveal the inner geometry. Video clip of the worlds largest slice and scan machine taking sequential shots of 1500 2mm slices of a termite mound filled with plaster of paris. Sir David Attenborough wonders into the wonderful world of the termites in South Africa to better understand the ways in which these amazing animals ventilate their homes, breed, and fight for survival. Brilliant video from BBC insect and wildlife show Life in the Undergrowth. Leave a Comment

colonies i

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Video from the Science Channels, Ants! Natures Secret Power. Here Leafcutter ants have constructed a subterranean nest, roughly 538 sq. ft across, with tunnels for shortest circulation routes, clean air intake, and carbon dioxide ventilation into chimneys reaching above the surface. Scientists filled the tunnels for three days with concrete, using 10 tons of concrete, which was then excavated a month later to reveal the entire subterranean megalopolis. Leave a Comment

The Archimorph website is currently down for redevelopment, and should be back online in the coming weeks. Please refer to the blog for all project developments until the website is back online.-JB Leave a Comment

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fractal natures ii January 12, 2010, 10:23 pm Filed under: Biomimetics, Theory

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original article Unpacking the nature of fractals and the mathematical properties for why they are universally relevant. As scale decreases, the number of dimensions of k-Minkowski spacetime (red line), which is an example of a space with quantum group symmetry, decreases from four to three. In contrast, classical Minkowski spacetime (blue line) is four-dimensional on all scales. This finding suggests that quantum groups are a valid candidate for the description of a quantum spacetime, and may have connections with a theory of quantum gravity. Usually, we think of spacetime as being four-dimensional, with three dimensions of space and one dimension of time. However, this Euclidean perspective is just one of many possible multi-dimensional varieties of spacetime. For instance, string theory predicts the existence of extra dimensions six, seven, even 20 or more. As physicists often explain, its impossible to visualize these extra dimensions; they exist primarily to satisfy mathematical equations. As if extra dimensions werent strange enough, new research has probed an even more mind-bending possibility: that spacetime has dimensions that change depending on the scale, and the dimensions could have fractal properties on small scales. In a recent study, Dario Benedetti, a physicist at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Ontario, has investigated two possible examples of spacetime with scaledependent dimensions deviating from classical values at short scales. More than being just an interesting idea, this phenomenon might provide insight into a quantum theory of relativity, which also has been suggested to have scale-dependent dimensions. Benedettis study is published in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters. It is an old idea in quantum gravity that at short scales spacetime might appear foamy, fuzzy, fractal or similar, Benedetti told PhysOrg.com. In my work, I suggest that quantum groups are a valid candidate for the description of such a quantum spacetime. Furthermore, computing the spectral dimension, I provide for the first time a link between quantum groups/noncommutative geometries and apparently unrelated approaches to quantum gravity, such as Causal Dynamical Triangulations and Exact Renormalization Group. And establishing links between different topics is often one of the best ways we have to understand such topics. In his study, Benedetti explains that a spacetime with quantum group symmetry has in general a scaledependent dimension. Unlike classical groups, which act on commutative spaces, quantum groups act on nocommutative spaces (e.g. where xy doesnt equal yx), which emerges through their unique curvature and quantum uncertainty. Here, Benedetti considers two types of spacetime with quantum group symmetry a quantum sphere and k-Minkowski spacetime and calculates their dimensions. In both spaces, the dimensions have fractal properties at small scales, and only reach classical values at large scales. In simple words, the relation between quantum groups and noncommutative geometry is as follows, he explained. Classically, we know that certain spaces are invariant under the action of some classical groups; for example, Euclidean space is invariant under rotations and translations. A quantum group is a deformation of a given classical group, and is such that no classical space can have it as a symmetry group. The invariant space has to be as well a deformation of a classical space, a deformation that makes it noncommutative. No relation of all this to fractals is known, but in my work Ive found that they do have a common property, that is, a non-integer dimension (at some scale). Compared to a Euclidean sphere, a quantum spheres curvature and uncertainty make it a noncommutative space. When calculating the spectral dimension of the quantum sphere, Benedetti found that it closely resembles a standard sphere on large scales; however, as the scale decreases, the dimensions of the quantum sphere deviate and go down to zero. He describes this phenomenon as a signature of the fuzziness, or

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uncertainty, of the quantum sphere, and also as resulting from fractal behavior at small scales. In the second kind of space, k-Minkowski spacetime, the dimensions also deviate from the constant behavior of classical Minkowski spacetime. While the latter always has four dimensions, independent of the scale, the number of dimensions in the quantum version decreases to three as a function of the scale. In both k-Minkowski spacetime and the quantum sphere, the dimensionality becomes non-integral, which is a typical signature of fractal geometry. Benedettis results match previous approaches to quantum gravity, which also point to the emergence of a ground-scale spacetime with fractal properties. Together, these studies may help scientists understand the unique Planck scale properties of spacetime, and possibly tie in to a quantum theory of gravity. For instance, as Benedetti explains, the fractal nature of quantum spacetime might enable gravity to cure its own ultraviolet behavior by dimensional reduction. The main problem with gravity is that apparently it cannot be quantized as other field theories; in jargon it is said to be non-renormalizable, he said. This problem is specific to four-dimensional spacetime. If spacetime had only two dimensions, then quantum gravity would be much simpler and treatable. The problem with a two-dimensional theory is that it is unphysical, as we see four dimensions at our scales. Things can be solved combining four and two dimensions at different scales. That is, if gravity itself provides a mechanism by which the dimension of spacetime depends on the scale at which we probe it (four at our and larger scales and two at very short scales), then we could have a physical theory (compatible with observations) that is free of quantum (short scale) troubles. Leave a Comment

precedents 1.13 January 12, 2010, 10:10 pm Filed under: Architecture, Biomimetics

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Two projects of particular interest by Ariel Schwartz and Mike Chino. Archimorph began researching similar topics, using Bacillus pasteurii, also known as the cementer bug in 2007 as a natural 3d printing device which would create habitable structures out of sand. Seed bombing technologies have also been of interest since early 2009 in the attempt to formulate a recent project for both the 2009 IaaC 3rd Annual Advanced Architecture Contest and the 2010 d3 Housing competition where genetically modified plant species are dropped into slums, like Manila, creating sustainable housing. Leave a Comment

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Sketches of radiolarianfrom The Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger circa 1858. Radiolarians condense their structure according to the flow of forces by controlling the diameter of the individual bubbles intersecting the global sphere in the radiolarian. Bubble clusters with a high amount of small diameter bubbles have a large amount of membrane surface, which finally results in a denser skeleton structure. The density of the skeletal structure reflects the amount of stress that can be carried within the structure. In this way radiolarians optimize the geometry of the grid of the skeletal structure according to the magnitude and the direction of the applied loads. This principle can be used for an optimization algorithm. As the first step the surface of the structure, which is unloaded, is divided into equal sized spheres in their closes packing (with six spheres round each sphere in a hexagonal grid). Each sphere is in a membrane stress situation like a soap bubble, for which the Laplace-Young equation (Isenberg[5]holds:p=2*q/r(p= internal pressure, q=stress, r=radius). By assuming the stress in each bubble as constant throughout the optimization procedure the internal pressure in the bubbles will represent as a measure of the internal stress in the structure. When the structure is loaded the internal stress in the structure will not be equal anymore in all places. Because we take the membrane stress as a constant with the Laplace-Young equation we can see that radius of each bubble will change according to its pressure. This will result in an optimized configuration of bubbles, in which the stress in each bubble is the same. For the way to solve this optimization process as linear optimization formulation has been used as is applied in the Thrust Network Analysis, in this way a more holistic way of optimization is achieved without an

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endless process of iterations with vary little variations in the numerous solutions. Ways of extending the proposed optimization routine is to take into account the deformations of the spheres during optimization without volume and pressure change or with volume and pressure change by using Boyles Law (P0V0 = P1V1(P=pressure, V=Volume, 0=before change, 1=after change). The benefit of the first extension is that the bubbles do not have to remain as spheres during the optimization, which gives an added design variable. The second extension would also give the added possibility of, besides form change, varying the membrane stresses and allowing the air inflated cushions (bubbles) to structurally behave differently.1

1 Borgart, Andrew. Stach, Edgar. Computational structural form finding and optimization of pneumatic structures Stress Pressure Volume

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Fig, Banyan, and Mangrove tree species show many possibilities with their aerial root configuration for genetic manipulation, creating sustainable structures from plant species. As our understanding of the human and plant genomes continues, we will gain the ability to manipulate these structures at the genetic level, both during embryonic development and after. As the worlds population explodes this could be one means to create sustainable inhabitable structures which simultaneously replenish the plant count which has seen a dramatic decrease from deforestation. Leave a Comment Previous Page previous newer Next Page

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