PhD Thesis: Convergence

Nov 2017 | Books & Other Publications, PhD Projects

COnvergence: Material adaptation and informatics in architecture

PhD thesis, Defne Sunguroglu Hensel 2017

Adaptive design is an architectural process by which available materials and local environments are adapted to changing design requirements. In traditional architecture, this process is effective but implicit and slow. Computer-aided architectural design (CAAD) lacks common and granular data models, intelligence capabilities and informatics tools that can assist, advance and accelerate it.

This information, technology and process gap can be filled with an ontology (MatOnt) tailored for design. The aim of MatOnt is to add a new process to turn CAAD into CAAAD, that is computer-aided adaptive architectural design. CAAAD’s strategic importance for sustainability-focused research and practice comes from enhanced ability to access advantageous new or alternative design pathways for targeted architectural development, and better customised, localized application and environmental impact. A particular role of this convergence-based biomimetic model and ontology-based informatics tool is to support experimentation. Nested Catenaries is a research-by-design project developed within this framework, which focuses on an adaptation of the convergent trait (catenary) to deliver a property combination that marks an innovation in unreinforced masonry shells.