Darya Holub, Hankai Ye, Mais Marouf, Dzmitry Sushkevich
The Architectural Association, AA School of Architecture, London
United Kingdom

Project idea

The team explored biomimetic principles inspired by the dragonfly’s membrane and on in-depth analysis of the dragonfly’s anatomy, which resulted in three key biomimetic principles: corrugation, vein thicknesses, and vein patterns. The adoption of this biomimetic system paved the way for an architectural solution to address the issue of insufficient indoor play areas inside London parks, catering to the need for shelter during the hottest summer months and coldest winter months. Therefore, the objective is to create a data-driven architectural structure that ensures environmental and societal benefits, while utilizing passive cooling and heating strategies.

Project description

The team developed an adaptive roofing system designed to cater to the climatic extremes experienced specifically in Hyde Park, London. The structure ensures the comfort of occupants, especially children, during the coldest and hottest months.

Technical information

To achieve this objective, the team produced physical prototypes and in parallel performed digital experiments. Digital experiments utilized iterative experimentations to assess the global initial surface against two fitness criteria: minimizing sun radiation in summer and maximizing it during winter. Other digital experiments focused on the performance of individual cells within the global surface, incorporating finite element (FE) analysis to test overall structural stability, sun radiation analysis using Ladybug Plugin in Grasshopper, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis to ensure efficient airflow during the hottest summer months. Moreover, physical experiments were conducted to validate the deployability of the developed mechanical system for airflow and assess the functionality of the joinery system.

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