Robotic Contouring

Architecture Challenge 16 – Robotic Contouring
Researching Robotic Bending of Straight Profile Plastic Beams for Full Scale
Production

Andrei Gheorghe1, Philipp Hornung2, Sigurd Reiss3, Robert Vierlinger4
1University of Applied Arts Vienna / Institute of Architecture 2University of Applied
Arts Vienna / RWC Lab 3Clever Contour GmbH 4Bollinger + Grohmann Ingenieure
1a.gheorghe@uni-ak.ac.at 2hornung.philipp@googlemail.com 3reiss@clevercontour. com 4robert.vierlinger@gmail.com

This paper by Andrei Gheorghe, Philipp Hornung, Sigurd Reiss and Robert Vierlinger provides insight into a new robotic plastic forming process through the prototypical construction of a full scale structure. The process explored the potential development of an automated setup, which utilizes robotic movement to create three-dimensional components from straight profile plastic beams.

Polyethylene beams with a rectangular profile were bent with the help of an infrared heating ring and a 6 axis robotic arm. The digital process with custom-created Rhino/Grasshopper components allows the creation of forms with a high degree of customization in relation to the needed construction time, therefore providing for a highly flexible and quickly developable structural formwork without the need of a mold.

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