Alternative Fabrication for FRP
Alternative Fabrication Process for Free-Form FRP Architectural Elements Relying on Fabric Materiality Towards Freedom from Molds and Surface Articulation
FRP (fiber reinforced polymers) is a family of composite materials combining fibers and polymers to offer exceptional mechanical properties. Its unique material properties have led to its wide application across industries. Although we witness a growing interest in the material in the architectural field in recent years, a significant barrier to its application lies in the need for a mold. The paper describes a new alternative fabrication process for architectural FRP elements that relies on fabric materiality. It suggests a mold free process, combining form finding and garment making techniques, to allow for complex morphologies, surface articulation and variation. The paper describes both the fabrication process through physical experiments, as well as the design process through the use of two design software tools. It demonstrates the potential for sustainable variation of large component facade system.
Conference paper: CAAD futures, Brazil, 2015