Soft Robotics in Architectural Context

doc. Ing. arch. Miloš Florián, Ph.D., Ing. arch. Jan Petrš

This paper presents an usage of soft mechanism for architectural purpose. Since last two decades computational architecture field is hardly influenced by robotics and a adaptivity, new materials and technologies are appearing almost every day. And architecture is mostly like multidisciplinary field which connect everything new and trying to package it to aesthetical form for application in context of current culture and society. Old format when was architecture mostly about constructions and their contextual aesthetics are at universities and research institutes often extended by material and technological issues. Soft robotics is a subfield of robotics dealing with soft or smart responsible materials. Due to its perfect adaptivity safety and flexibility it can be an alternative to rigid mechanisms and bring the robotics closer to natural performances. Uncountable examples of plant and animal systems use the soft mechanisms for their adaptation and movement in a real environment. Soft robotics is concerned as a main driving scope in the robotics future. High potential for its use is in the fields of medicine and manufacturing. But it started to influence also to the architecture during the last years. Mostly as an alternative to classical rigid actuators in interactive or kinetics structures as well as cooperative small scale robots. Goal of this paper is to compare previous and current research on a field of soft robotics in architectural context.

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