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UL Interdisciplinary Team wins Int'l Competition for Innovative Structures

An ultra light-weight structure project by a group of interdiscplary design students from Civil Engineering, Architecture, and Industral Design working with Assistant Professor BoSheng Liu, Assistant Professor Tanvir Faisal, and Professor Corey Saft has recently been named a finalist in an international competition.

The competition was created by the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS). It invited proposals for structures with a strong vision of structural design and innovation. The call was for proposals which "should demonstrably be the result of structural engineering focused research projects. It is [the IASS's] ambition to have an exhibition that shows new insights on structural typologies, through the design of a pavilion."

The UL Lafayette Architecture proposal, Radiolaria Pavilion, aka, RAD Pavilion, is an ultra light-weight structure that utilizes engineered fiberglass material and active bending methodology to create a moldless fiberglass structure.

The design and the structural system strive to mimic the capsule structure of radiolaria, that is typically constructed by an inner endoplasm and an outer ectoplasm, aggregating and forming a Voronoi cellular structure. The pavilion cellular pattern distribution is reflected in stress analysis which the cells are smaller (less than 1’x1’, 0.3m x 0.3m) and closer together on the surface area where the stress is concentrated.

In October, Prof. Liu and his students will travel to Barcelona to build the RAD Pavilion for an accompanying exhibition at the joint IASS - Structural Membranes Form and Force 2019 Symposium.

We congratulate the Radiolaria Pavilion team on their outstanding accomplishment and wish them the best of luck in the final competition phase in Barcelona!

Drawing of RAD Pavilion proposal

Prototype of RAD Pavilion's structure