REMOTE MATERIAL DEPOSITION
Centuries old ballistic methods enable and unexpected inversion of parameters. Instead of 3D printing with machines that enclose their fabricated pieces, an immobile machine can fabricate a structure many times larger than itself.
Curving wall, robotic process with clay projectile shooting and deposition
Research and teaching project done at Gramazio Kohler Research, ETH Zürich
Sitterwerk Kunstgieserei, St. Gallen, Switzerland
10 m x 10 m x 1-2m
Unfired clay shaped in cylindrical projectiles
Rhino, Python, Grasshopper
Universal Robots UR5 on a custom spherical projectile rig
Sebastian Ernst (research lead), Kathrin Dörfler, Sitterwerk Kunst und Produktion - Felix Lehner, Julia Lütolf, Ariane Roth, Laurin Schaub
Ralph Benker, Bo Cheng, Roberto Naboni, Pascal Ruckstuhl, Ivana Stiperski, Simone Stünzi, Anna Szabo, Andreas Thoma, Martin Thoma, Alexander Walzer, James Yeo
Ayad Daniel, Maged Elsadek, Neel Jain, Orkun Kasap, Brenni Maria Seline, Yina Ng, Anna Szabo, Kosar Tayebani, Andreas Thoma, Maja Zeller
Festo AG, Schweiz, Hans und Wilma Stutz Stiftung, Herisau, IKEA-Stiftung (Schweiz), Basel
Remote Material Deposition explores the idea of robotically positioning material in space from a distance and thereby creating differentiated architectural aggregations that are a direct expression of a dynamic and adaptive fabrication process. As such, the elective course focused on the bi-directional link between digital and material processes, data and construction, and its integration within the architectural design. This approach was tested and validated through a series of scaled prototypical structures – not only broadening the tectonic spectrum but also asserting a specific architectural expression as a result of incorporating adaptive fabrication logic directly into the design process. In the elective thesis we continued our investigation into Remote Material Deposition and demonstrated – in cooperation with the Sitterwerk St.Gallen – this entirely new fabrication technique for the first time at full architectural scale. The architectural installation was a result of a one-month-long workshop and, within this scope, proposes a radically new way of thinking about materializing architecture. Featuring an industrial robot that aggregates material over distance and therefore exceeds its predefined workspace, this installation brings not only forward a novel scale of digital fabrication in architecture – it also takes a first step in characterizing a novel approach in digital fabrication, taking architecture beyond the creation of static forms to the design of dynamic material aggregation processes.