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Beyond Mining - Urban Growth / MycoTree

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Felix Heisel
added a research item
The article at hand follows the understanding that future cities cannot be built the same way as existing ones, inducing a radical paradigm shift in how we produce and use materials for the construction of our habitat in the 21st century. In search of a methodology for an integrated, holistic, and interdisciplinary development of such new materials and construction technologies, the chair of Sustainable Construction at KIT Karlsruhe proposes the concept of “prototypological” research. Coined through joining the terms “prototype” and “typology”, prototypology represents a full-scale application, that is an experiment and proof in itself to effectively and holistically discover all connected aspects and address unknowns of a specific question, yet at the same time is part of a bigger and systematic test series of such different typologies with similar characteristics, yet varying parameters. The second part of the article applies this method to the research on mycelium-bound building materials, and specifically to the four prototypologies MycoTree, UMAR, Rumah Tambah, and Futurium. The conclusion aims to place the results into the bigger research context, calling for a new type of architectural research.
Felix Heisel
added 2 research items
MycoTree is a spatial branching structure made out of load-bearing mycelium components. Its geometry was designed using 3D graphic statics, utilising compression-only form to enable the weak material to perform structurally. Using only mycelium and bamboo, the structure represents a provocative vision of how one may move beyond the mining of our construction materials from the earth's crust to their cultivation; how achieving stability through geometry rather than through material strength opens up possibilities to use weaker materials structurally and safely; and ultimately, how newly developed cultivated materials in combination with informed structural design have the potential to propose an alternative to established building materials for a more sustainable construction industry.
MycoTree is a spatial branching structure made out of load-bearing mycelium components. Its geometry was designed using 3D graphic statics, utilizing compression-only form to enable the weak material to perform structurally. Built from only mycelium and bamboo, the structure represents a provocative vision of how one may move beyond the mining of our construction materials from the earth’s crust to their cultivation and urban growth; how achieving stability through geometry rather than through material strength opens up possibilities to use weaker materials structurally and safely; and ultimately, how regenerative resources in combination with informed structural design have the potential to propose an alternative to established building materials for a more sustainable construction industry.
Felix Heisel
added a research item
Das Fachgebiet „Nachhaltiges Bauen“ am Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT) und dem Future Cities Laboratory Singapore, sowie die Block Research Group (BRG) der Eidgenössischen Technischen Hochschule (ETH) Zürich kombinieren ihr Wissen um Materialien, Konstruktion, Statik und Geometrie auf der Suche nach Alternativen zur vorherrschenden Design- und Materialineffizienz in der Bauindustrie. Am KIT erforscht ein interdisziplinäres Team das Wachstum natürlicher, regenerativer Materialien und ihre Verwen- dung im Bauwesen. Die BRG untersucht Methoden aus der Vergangenheit, wie z. B. raumüberspannende Druckbögen oder die Technik der grafischen Statik, und entwickelt diese unter Nutzung heutiger Technologien und digitaler Werkzeuge weiter. In der Kombination eröffnet sich hierdurch die Möglich- keit, Materialien mit relativ geringer Festigkeit für tragende Bauteile zu nutzen. Auf der Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017 präsentieren die Forscher aktuell den MycoTree: eine Lasttragende Struktur aus Pilzmycel und Bambus – in dieser Form eine Weltneuheit.
Felix Heisel
added 3 research items
Edited by Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Hyungmin Pai, urbanNext Imminent Commons, first book from the Seoul Biennale 2017, will present an imminent urban cosmology that is crucially mediated by the technologies and institutions that feed us, move us, condition our environments, recycle our refuse, make our clothes, and connect us into communities. The cities of the world stand at a crossroads. Amidst radical social, economic, and technological transformations, will the city become a driving force of creativity, diversity, and sustainability, or will it be a mechanism of inequality, despair, and environmental decay? At this critical moment, where do the stakes lie and what are the agents of change? From the time of its birth, the city has been held together by the commons.