Assembling self-supporting structures

Mario Deuss, Daniele Panozzo, Emily Whiting, Yang Liu, Philippe Block, Olga Sorkine-Hornung, Mark Pauly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

(Figure Presented) Self-supporting structures are prominent in historical and contemporary architecture due to advantageous structural properties and efficient use of material. Computer graphics research has recently contributed new design tools that allow creating and interactively exploring self-supporting freeform designs. However, the physical construction of such freeform structures remains challenging, even on small scales. Current construction processes require extensive formwork during assembly, which quickly leads to prohibitively high construction costs for realizations on a building scale. This greatly limits the practical impact of the existing freeform design tools. We propose to replace the commonly used dense form-work with a sparse set of temporary chains. Our method enables gradual construction of the masonry model in stable sections and drastically reduces the material requirements and construction costs. We analyze the input using a variational method to find stable sections, and devise a computationally tractable divide-and-conquer strategy for the combinatorial problem of finding an optimal construction sequence. We validate our method on 3D printed models, demonstrate an application to the restoration of historical models, and create designs of recreational, collaborative self-supporting puzzles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalACM Transactions on Graphics
Volume33
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 19 2014

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Keywords

  • Assembly order
  • Masonry models
  • Optimization
  • Self-supporting surfaces
  • Sparsity
  • Static equilibrium analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design

Cite this

Deuss, M., Panozzo, D., Whiting, E., Liu, Y., Block, P., Sorkine-Hornung, O., & Pauly, M. (2014). Assembling self-supporting structures. ACM Transactions on Graphics, 33(6). https://doi.org/10.1145/2661229.2661266