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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Drawing a live section: explorations into robotic membranes
Mette Ramsgard Thomsen
Keywords Cybernetics, Design, Robotics, Textiles, Architecture
Purpose–This paper aims to discuss the conceptualisation, design and realisation of a robotic membrane. Presenting research taking place between the cross-over among architecture, technical textiles and computer science, the paper seeks to explore the theoretical as well as the practical foundations for the making of a dynamic architecture.
Design/methodology/approach–The project employs an architectural design method developing working demonstrators. The paper asks how a material can be described through its behavioural as well as its formal properties. As new materials such as conductive and resistive fibres as well as smart memory alloys and polymers are developed, it becomes possible to create new hybrid materials that incorporate the possibility for state change.
Findings–The paper presents the first explorations into the making of architectural membranes that integrate systems for steering using traditional textile technologies. This paper presents a series of architectural investigations and models that seek to explore the conceptual, computational and the technological challenges of a robotic membrane.
Originality/value–The paper presents original thinking and technical innovation into the making of textile spaces.