Category Archives: Theodoros Grousopoulos

Wave Breaker / Robotic Sand Forming

The purpose of Sand Forming workshop was to explore the potential of using granular materials to produce reusable molds for building elements in concrete. The 4-day workshop covered a variety of matters including basic scripting strategies in Rhino.Python, extensive tooling and prototyping. The application and final modeling would be controlled through an industrial robot, to guarantee sufficient precision and repeatability of the process. At the same time, the research would investigate the relation between design and its application in architecture.

Through manual experiments in soil, the workshop focused initially in developing the proper manipulation tool to achieve the desirable design outcome. After a series of trials with simple and more complicated tools, a nozzle based on a simple cubic geometry was developed and used to get sample patterns in clay. The chosen design was then created and tested in Python. The software would give a full overview of the panel pattern and by simulating the process give feedback about possible machinic limitations. The created geometrical code was used by a Kuka robot that reproduced the digital design in clay. The final panels were created by purring concrete on the formed mold.

This novel method for fabrication enabled the production of uniquely customized prototypes with complex geometries, minimizing the waste that is normally used for formwork.

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