The Hex (Kite) by Stanislav Roudavski
2016 - 2017, Platinum A' Arts, Crafts and Ready-Made Design Award Winner
The HEX kite is an outcome of an experimental studio run at the Melbourne School of Design in 2016. Kites can be interesting for architects because they tame a powerful energy source with minimal means to achieve amazing, and sustainable, performance. What if buildings could be supported by the available wind, just like kites? What can kites teach architects about the invisible landscapes of air? These are the types of questions asked by the broader ongoing research that motivated this project.
The Hex kite is a twelve-meter-long inflatable structure that was produced by a computational process originally invented to describe the growth of plants. This technique allows designers to write down rules that can guide the growth of whole families of objects. Like living creatures evolving through natural selection, members of such families can adapt to diverse needs and conditions leading to outstanding efficiency, unimaginable forms and aesthetic enjoyment.
Design Challenges
The Hex is a unique structure that has never been attempted before in a kite. It is generated semi-automatically with the custom software resolving all joints and preparing the patterns for assembly. The process of assembly is also challenging and requires careful management of multiple similar parts. Because the topology of the Hex does not allow the whole object to be turned inside-out, the joining of the parts has to follow a unique strict sequence to ensure all seams are on the inside.
Production Technology
1. Use an L-system to generate the graph. 2. Skin the graph using a parametric model. 3. Use a custom program to pattern the skin, unfold the patches, nest the patches into the standard sheet for cutting. 4. Cut and stitch.
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