We've got our eye trained on developments like 3D printing and downloadable design, which are poised to downsize the ecological footprint of products and building. Take this recent installation by London-based designers Pablo Zamorano, Nacho Marti and German Jacob Bek: a zero-waste structure that uses computer-aided design to help determine the most efficient way to cut and form individual flat pieces of material into a beautifully-patterned structure that requires no secondary supports.
Created for the recent SPOGA furniture design exhibition in Cologne, Germany, the project is part of an ongoing research into so-called "Expandable Surface Systems," and was done in collaboration with the Emergent Technologies and Design Programme at London's Architectural Association. The designers describe the project's process via a tip submission:
Through a novel fabrication process, we developed a method to achieve zero waste of material and dispense the need for additional formwork. Along with this material process, a parametric computational tool was created to find the required cutting pattern to achieve a specific geometry. Both modes of fabrication and computation were based on material properties to ensure the system's structural and construction feasibility.
Looking at the video of how the cutting patterns are determined, it seems like each surface is treated like a deformable carapace of sorts that can be endlessly adjusted depending on the required end result:
A video showing how the panels are precision-cut, bent and fastened together to create a patterned pavilion that holds itself up, thanks to the specific cuts that are made:
Certainly an interesting and technologically-oriented approach to zero-waste building that could help cut down on the materials needed to construct an attractive structure, if only a temporary one.
More information on Pablo's website.