The Flying Mast

(insane in the membrane...)

International Conference on Structures and Architecture, ICSA 2010

The International Conference on Structures and Architecture, ICSA 2010, will be held in Guimarães (Portugal), from the 21-23 July 2010.

I will be presenting in the event, together with Eng. Iago González Quelle, the lecture “Tensile Structures. Interdisciplinary Teamwork as win-win Situation “.

We will be sharing our professional experience together and highlight the importance and benefits of a cross-disciplinary collaboration between architects and engineers in the design of tensile structures. In effect, one of the most distinctive aspects of tensile architecture is that architectural design and structural engineering are intrinsically engaged from the earliest phase of the planning process. This alliance affects significantly the aesthetic qualities of the project.

We will also addresses the potential of parametric design in the field of membrane architecture.

The conference will focus on the recent developments in the construction field and intends to stimulate and promote interdisciplinary teamwork between Architects and Structural Engineers.

The Conference will be held at the Convention Centre of the Campus of Azurém of the University of Minho in Guimarães, Portugal.

The conference program can be downloaded here.

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June 24, 2010 - 9:30 AM Comments: Closed

Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth

(Credit: ChuckAitch (Charles Heiman - iMedi8 Photographic) via Flickr)

This is the third Stadium designed by the Berlin-based firm GMP Architekten for the 2010 FIFa World Cup in South Africa. The other two venues are the Moses Mabhida Stadium and the Greenpoint Stadium.

(Credit: ChuckAitch (Charles Heiman - iMedi8 Photographic) via Flickr)

The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is located in Port Elizabeth next to North End Lake in the middle of Prince Alfred’s Park, and was designed as a football and rugby stadium. The stadium can seat 48,000 spectators and during the World Cup it will host eight games, including the 3rd and 4th place match.

(Credit: nedend via Flickr)

The roof structure protects spectators against the sun and frequent, violent onshore winds, and features approximately 21,300 m2 of PTFE coated fiberglass membrane arranged in 36 leaf-shaped components that completely wrap the stadium. 2,400 metric tons of roof girders were used to form the roof design. The valleys formed by the roof’s cable system will help drain rainwater. The cantilever tresses that support the edges of each fabric panel are clad in aluminum.

(Credit: smee.bruce via Flickr)

The construction of the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium aims to revitalize the whole urban area of Port Elizabeth, and is designed to become, after the games, a water based recreational area and offer a high-quality modern facility for the local sport clubs.

(Credit: Direkteur Begeleiding via Flickr)

For more info on The Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth see also:

dezeen.com

archdaily.com

Other related posts on this blog:

The World Cup stadiums in South Africa

The Moses Mabhida Stadium

The Greenpoint Stadium

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June 16, 2010 - 4:54 PM Comments: Closed

The Moses Mabhida Stadium

(Credit: David J. Roberts via Flickr)

The Moses Mabhida stadium – named after the former general secretary of the South African Communist Party – is one of the three stadiums designed by the German firm GMP Architekten for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

This project group consisted of a total of 32 South African architectural firms plus GMP Architekten as consultant architects and Schlaich Bergermann und Partner as conceptual structural engineers.

(Credit: Sir. Mo via Flickr)

The Moses Mabhida Stadium is situated on an elevated platform in the central sports park on the shore of the Indian Ocean, and is accessed from the city and station via a broad flight of steps.

(Credit: Sir. Mo via Flickr)

The construction was finished in 2009 and some matches have been already held in this venue. The Moses Mabhida Stadium has a capacity to seat 70,000, and will host one of the FIFA 2010 World Cup semi-final matches. After the games, the number will be reduced to 56,000, but can be temporarily increased to as many as 85,000 for major events.

(Credit: David J. Roberts via Flickr)

The project features a 105m arch that rises high over the stadium, and is destined to become an architectural icon and city landmark in Durban’s skyline.

(Credit: Sir. Mo via Flickr)

The 350m long free-span steel arch weighs 2600 tons, and carries the weight of the inner membrane roof with 95mm-diameter steel cables.

(Credit: ¡Fgz! via Flickr)

(Credit: ChameleonGreen via Flickr)

The unusual geometry of the cable system is derived logically from the structure.

Radial prestressing cables are attached to the external edge of the roof all round the stadium and the great arch on one side and the inner edge of the roof on the other, thus forcing the latter into an almond shape.

The bifurcation of the huge arch at the south end forms the main entrance of the stadium. At the northern end, a cable car transports visitors to the ‘Skydeck’ at the apex of the arch to get a panoramic view of the city and the Indian Ocean.

(Credit: ChameleonGreen via Flickr)

The 46,000m2 PTFE-coated roof membrane admits 50% of the sunlight into the arena while also providing shade and shelter from rain to 80% of the stadium.

(Credit: Marc Forrest via Flickr)

By night the roof surfaces is illuminated on top by a line of LEDs mounted directly on the arch and from below by floodlights installed on the catwalk, resulting in a spectacular view.

(Credit: nozoomii via Flickr)

The compression ring and façade are carried on precast concrete columns below and hollow box steel columns above, the height and angle of inclination varying around the stadium from approx. 30m with a 90° inclination to about 50m with a 60° inclination.

(Credit: YattaCat via Flickr)

The façade is covered with perforated metal sheeting which give the stadium a light and airy feel. This solution provides shelter from rain and strong winds while allowing in natural light and ventilation.

For more info on The Moses Mabhida Stadium see also:

dezeen.com

designboom.com

archdaily.com

inhabitat.com

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June 12, 2010 - 9:30 AM Comments: Closed

The World Cup stadiums in South Africa

The Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban (Credit: smee.bruce on Flickr)

Within only a few hours the FIFA 2010 World Cup will kickoff in South Africa!

The world Cup is without a doubt one of the biggest televised events on earth – A 30-day-long global summer party.

The matches will take place in 10 venues in nine cities across South Africa, Five of which were built especially for the tournament, and five of the existing venues were upgraded.

View Larger Map

In addition to the sportive manifestation, viewers from all over the world will witness some spectacular examples of membrane roofing.

In the following days I will be covering on this blog some of most stunning stadiums where the 32 competing national teams will strive to win the desired FIFA World Cup Trophy.

In the meanwhile you can take a look at all ten stadiums that will host the World Cup modeled in 3D on Google Earth and Google Maps. You can download the gadget here.

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June 11, 2010 - 2:46 PM Comments: Closed

The “Expo Boulevard” on designboom.com

The Sun Valleys in Shanghai (via designboom.com)

designboom.com just published a very interesting article on the “Expo Boulevard” (also known as the “sun Valleys”) – the huge membrane structure that covers the main entrance to the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai – designed by the Stuttgart based practice SBA from and Knippers Helbig Advanced Engineering (also from Stuttgart).

You can find the article here.

Here’s a previous post i wrote a few months ago on this blog regarding this impressive tensile structure.

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May 16, 2010 - 11:41 AM Comments: Closed

Photovoltaic Tensile Structures by FTL Solar

FTL Solar's PowerMod

FTL Solar – an American company founded in 1998 – has developed a range of sustainable products that integrate lightweight tensile fabrics with thin photovoltaic panels called PowerMods®.

PowerMods provide shelter while generating enough solar electricity (up to 4.5 kWh a day) that could power construction tools, lights, fans, medical equipment, computers, and so on.

These versatile products are particularly lightweight, portable and flexible and therefore suitable for commercial, military and disaster relief purposes, as well as for car parks shades or small garden tent structures.

Via Inhabitat. com

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May 1, 2010 - 5:20 PM Comments: Closed

lighttube by Arch. Marco Hemmerling

(Text and photos courtsy of Arch. Marco Hemmerling)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

(Photo by Martial Trezzini)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

Last weekend the installation lighttube has been inaugurated at the 9th annual Festival “Arbres et Lumières” in Geneva, Switzerland. The concept for the illumination at Square Pierre Fatio in the city center is based on two major aspects of spatial perception. In first place the installation amplifies the relation between the central column and the surrounding trees. By reinforcing the correlation of the trees with the centre of the square, the light membrane structure focuses on the connection of the vertical elements of the site. The second aspect of the design aims to an added value, which is brought in with the new element of the lighttube. Even though being a connector, the lighttube manages to establish its own quality, which formally derives from the evolutionary principle of growth. The abstract idea of ramification is transformed into an integral shape that puts the trees as well as the column and the space in between in a new light. The light concept incorporates a constant change of color for the illuminated trees and the membrane structure to support the idea of evolutionary transformation and generates at the same time an ever-changing perception of the scenery. Next to other installations, lighttube will be exposed in Geneva until January 3rd.

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

(Photo by Michel Bobilier)

Marco Hemmerling (1970) studied architecture and interior design. Before setting up his own practice in Cologne, he worked at the firm UN Studio and was, among others, co-head of design and execution of the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart. Since 2007 he teaches and conducts research as Professor of Architecture & Design Interior at the Ostwestfalen-Lippe University of Applied Sciences. Marco Hemmerling intervenes in various universities and conferences across Europe and in South America.

lighttube_05

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December 4, 2009 - 2:43 PM Comments: Closed

The “Sun Valleys” at the World Expo 2010


(Source: People's Daily Online)

(Source: People's Daily Online)

This is the first of six 40 meters tall cone-shaped canopies named “Sun Valleys” that are being built in Shanghai for the 2010 World Expo.
The “Sun Valleys” will be distributed along the Expo Axis, a multi-story 1 km long and 110 meters wide promenade providing commercial, catering, entertainment, and exhibition services for the millions of visitors expected to attend the forthcoming event.

Sun-Valley-Expo-7

(Source: People's Daily Online)

This covered pedestrian walkway will be the main entrance to the Expo site and will connect with four major pavilions through the elevated platform and underground passages. With its nearly 250,000 square meters, it is the largest structure being built for the venue.

(Source: People's Daily Online)

(Source: People's Daily Online)

Above the Expo Axis the giant light membrane roof will look like, as the organizers promis, “white clouds floating in the blue sky”.

The steel and plastic “Sun Valleys”, as the name suggest, will convey daylight and air into the underground level in order to reduce the energy consumed by the artificial lighting. Further, they will collect rainwater that could be recycled for irrigation and flushing purposes.

Each of these complex structures is made of approximaely 10,000 joins, all which are unique.

Sources: World Architecture News, China Daily, Inhabitat, People’s Daily Online.

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November 14, 2009 - 12:21 PM Comments: Closed

Olympiapark by Günther Behnisch and Frei Otto (1972)

A fascinating documentary about the Munich Olympic stadium designed by Günther Behnisch and Frei Otto and built for the 1972 games.
It illustrates clearly the entire process of the planning and construction of the innovative acrylic glass canopy mounted on stainles steel cable net, that covers the main stadium and big part of the Olympic Village (Olympiapark).

Situated in northenrn Munich, it is regarded as one of the world’s most remarkable stadiums ever built (stands easily the competition with much recent and notable facilities) and an extraordinary civil engineering achievement for its time. Interestingly the form finding and structural analysis of the cable net was done using principally scaled physical models (numerical programmes came in only later).

Worth watching! (it’s not necessary to understand German…)

Part 1

…and part 2

MIMOA

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November 10, 2009 - 8:38 PM Comments: Closed

U2 360° Space Station by STUFISH

(Source: STUFISH)

(Credit: Fran Simó on Flickr)

(Credit: Fran Simó on Flickr)

Architect Mark Fisher designed this stunning colossal stage for U2 360° Tour.

This futuristic set, nicknamed “The Claw”, is the tallest stage ever built for a rock concert, and it took almost three years to realize. Bono christened it the “U2 Space Station”.

Some might notice a slight incongruity between U2’s environmental/humanitarian activity and this extravaganza… but who cares, it looks great.

The elliptical 436,5m² stage was placed in the center of the arena, avoiding the conventional end-stage stadium show, in order to guarantee a better view to anyone in the crowd. This solution leaves the band free to move in any direction and maintain a greater intimacy with the surrounding audience, despite the scale of the show.

(Credit: jas_gd on Flickr)

(Credit: jas_gd on Flickr)

Willie Williams the show director got the inspiration for the supporting structure from the 1961 LAX theme restaurant in L.A. Airport (USA) by architect James Langenheim / Pereira + Luckman, he imagined a similar structure, with the legs spanning clear across the full width of a football field so that both band and audience stood beneath the structure, with the entire production equipment (sound, lights and video screen) hanging above the band. The conventional supporting towers would obstruct sightlines from a large number of seats. The structure is 30m high and spans 57.5m. The tip of the central pylon reaches 51.8m. All together it weights 190 tonnes.

LAX_Theme_Restaurant

LAX theme restaurant in L.A. Airport (1961) by architect James Langenheim / Pereira + Luckman (Source: www.you-are-here.com)

The spectacular giant cone-shaped video screen hanging beneath the structure in the void over the stage was designed with artist and engineer Chuck Hoberman. It is made of LED panels mounted on kinetic scissor mesh surface that expand and contracts changing the image density from 100% solid to almost 50% transparent. The video screen is made of 1,000,000 different pieces and weights 74 tonnes.

U2-360_6

(Credit: Salomao Nunes on Flickr)

The tensile membrane cladding of the structure allows low packing volume and fast assembly and gives the entire project a strong identifiable expressiveness. The form-finding and detailing of the membrane was done by David Dexter Associates.

Three 4.8m diameter inverted umbrellas were placed below the stage and deployed whenever needed to keep the band and equipment dry. These umbrellas were originally invented by Frei Otto in 1971 for a garden exhibition in Germany.

(Credit: Talie on Flickr)

(Credit: Talie on Flickr)

(Credit: Sam Judson on Flickr)

(Credit: Sam Judson on Flickr)

Touring such a massive structure is logistically very complex. Three sets of the metalwork were built so they could travel in parallel between the cities, each one taking four days to build and two days to take down, with one day in the middle for production load-in and one day for the show. Everything else, the video screen, lighting, sound, stage, etc. (176 tonnes) would be toured separately as universal production, to be loaded in during the 36 hours preceding the show. 201 trucks were needed to move the entire production – equipment, steel systems, barricade and generators.

The first show took place at Camp Nou in Barcelona, on 30 June 2009 in front of a crowd of 90,000 people.

_

Production Credits:

Show Director/Designer – Willie Williams

Architect – Mark Fisher

Video screen kinetic design – Chuck Hoberman

Structural and membrane engineering – Neil Thomas, Atelier One

Video screen structural engineering – Buro Happold, New York

Membrane form finding – Gavin Sayers, David Dexter

Membrane Fabrication: Architen Landrell Associates

Polyp Mushrooms: Steel Monkey Engineering

Primary Steelwork Fabrication: StageCo

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November 3, 2009 - 12:39 PM Comments: Closed

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