Physical Drivers: Synthesis of Evolutionary Developments and Force-Driven Design


  • Sean Ahlquist,

  • Achim Menges


Primarily admired as feats of engineering, tension-driven material systems are notoriously difficult for architects to employ. Though the shape and structural capacity of these systems are defined by the imposition of force, they do not follow predictable geometric or mathematical patterns. In this article, Sean Ahlquist and Achim Menges present their research into force-driven material systems, and explain the development of an architectural design framework that allows for these complex material interdependencies to be not only resolved, but also explored as multiple possible equilibrium states. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.