With Polyhedral Structures Lab at Penn (PSL) and Computational Textile Lab (SOFTLAB) at PSU.
This work investigates fabricating shell-based cellular structures using knitting techniques. Shellular Funicular Structures are two-manifold single-layer structures that can be designed in the context of graphic statics. These are efficient compression/tension-only structures that have been designed for a certain boundary condition. Although the shellular funicular structures are efficient geometries in transferring the forces, the fabrication process is challenging due to the geometric complexity of the structure. Since Shellular structures comprise a single surface, they are suitable candi- dates to be fabricated using knitting technique, a method by which yarn is manipulated to create a textile or fabric. Using knitting approach, one can fabricate shellular structures with minimum production waste in which the knit can work as a formwork for actual structure or act as a composite structure combined with bio-based resin. This research proposes a workflow to fabricate shellular structures using knitting that can be scaled up for industrial purposes. In this process, the designed shellular structures are divided into multiple sections that can be unrolled into planar geometries. These geometries are optimized based on the elastic forces in the knitted network and knitted and sewn to make a topologically complex geometry of the shellular systems. After assembling the knitted parts and applying external forces at the boundaries, the final configuration of the structural form in tension is achieved. Then this form is impregnated with custom bio-resin blends from chitosan, sodium alginate, and silk fibroin to stiffen the soft knit structures into a compressed system. Although this method is an efficient fabrication technique for constructing prototypes, our joint research will continue optimizing towards an integrated workflow at scale.
Team: Mostafa AKBARI, Farzaneh OGHAZIAN, Ji Yoon BAE
PIs: Felecia DAVIS, Laia MOGAS-SOLDEVILA, Masoud AKBARZADEH.
Acknowledgements: This research was partially funded by University Research Foundation (URF) to Dr. Laia Mogas- Soldevila and by the National Science Foundation CAREER Award (NSF CAREER-1944691 CMMI) and the National Science Foundation Future Eco Manufacturing Research Grant (NSF, FMRG-CMMI 2037097) to Dr. Masoud Akbarzadeh.
Upcoming Publication: Mostafa AKBARI, Farzaneh OGHAZIAN, Ji Yoon BAE, Felecia DAVISc, Laia MOGAS-SOLDEVILA, Masoud AKBARZADEH (2 023)Proceedings of the IASS Annual Symposium 2023 Integration of Design and Fabrication 10 – 14 July 2023, Melbourne, Australia Y.M. Xie, J. Burry, T.U. Lee and J. Ma (eds.). http://iass2023.org.au