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Challenging the form of buildings
2012-04-25 22:07:46


Many architects are keen to challenge the established forms and shapes of buildings,but are constrained by the abilities of conventional  construction materials to turn futuristic concepts into reality. The use of moulded FRP opens up new possibilities to produce dramatic geometric forms as demonstrated by proposals for the interior of the redeveloped Battersea Power Station (Pultruded Profile).
However, care needs to be taken with the ability to ‘make anything in composites’ and how this is expressed to architects and clients.
Whilst it is possible to mould complex free-form structures, they will generally be more expensive to produce than repetitive geometries, where good quality moulds can be produced and amortised over a large number of mouldings. The development of large multi-axis machining centres for producing moulds or plugs directly from computer surface files may help to reduce costs for making complex parts, but the importance of considering the manufacturing methodology at an early stage in the design development, and preferably before geometry is frozen, cannot be over-emphasised.

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