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Key Words: Biological method, complex geometry, unconventional building methodologies, local assembly processes, 3d printing.

The Biological Morphologies workshop is focused on material efficiency in nature and how this can be the inspiration for innovative concrete structural solutions.

The Visiting School in Mumbai will explore how a bio-inspired logic can be translated into design. Biomimetics is the examination of systems, processes, and elements of nature and how specific case studies can serves as inspiration for innovative design solutions. The advancement of digital tools has facilitated experimental building techniques that can be positioned and respond to specific local environmental conditions such as Mumbai. Dynamic spatial structures will be developed using sophisticated computational tools and delivered with low-tech assembly methods. This will be a digital craft workshop that considers the forming of complex concrete structures that feedback to computational platforms. The tectonics and fabrication will result in a site-specific architectural intervention installed within an appropriate site in Mumbai, India.

Biomimicry

Examples from biology will inform the development and exploration how structure is formed in nature. Case studies such as cuttle fish bone, pressure membranes, bird skulls and abalone shells will form the base knowledge for how material efficiency is achieved in nature. These will inform the new lightweight concrete technique established in London prior to the workshop, on site students will engage with additional relevant biological examples and learn the material technique through geometrical exploration.

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Material Process

The material system process will be informed by biomimetic methods with a purpose to embed an intelligence into a specific material such as concrete. The material courses will include introduction to current and new techniques as well as looking at historical examples of concrete structures. The ambition will be to explore the potential of creating dynamic geometries using lightweight concrete techniques.

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Digital Tools

The translation of scientific methods to built form is through using specific digital tools. Introduction courses to software such as rhino, grasshopper, eco - tect and finite element analysis software will be taught at the workshop. These tools will be used to accelerate the experimentation process and create shell structure geometries that can be formed in concrete.

 

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