The Evolution in the Design Tools for Membrane Structures _ LSU Lecture Series

Welcome to the lectures series 2023/24 at LSU, the Lightweight Structures Unit, Faculty of Architecture, Universität Innsbruck hosted by Professor Günther H. Filz.

The design of tensioned membrane structures went through a rapid evolution in the last century: physical models, hand drawings and analytical structural calculations have been gradually replaced by digital 3D modelling tools, CAD software and FEM engineering software. 
This presentation provides a summary of the key developments in the architectural and engineering design of tensioned membrane structures with an overview of the analytical structural methods and hand calculations of the early pioneering project. The presentation also includes a description of the physical models and experimental methods to determine the form of structures and the gradual development of reliable computational methods to improve the accuracy and effectiveness of the design process.
The potential of the new design tools is illustrated with practical examples and built projects developed with the support of the new engineering and modelling computer software. 

Paolo Beccarelli, University of Nottingham. Dr Paolo Beccarelli holds a M.Sc. in Architectural Engineering from the University of Pavia and a PhD in Architectural Membranes from Politecnico di Milano. He is a Chartered Engineer and Architect in Italy and Vice-Chari of TensiNet, the European network on tensioned membrane structures.  He co-founded Maco Technology srl (2012) and Tensairity Solutions srl (2014), two Italian companies focused on the design and construction of membrane structures in Italy.

His research is focused on the impact of new digital tools on the design, engineering, and manufacturing of temporary lightweight structures. He is the Principal Investigator of several funded research projects designed to exploit his research in the British and Italian industries. The research outputs include International Patents, Registered EU Community Designs and scientific papers published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at the main international conferences in this field. He was the engineering partner of several architectural projects led by award-winning architectural design and engineering firms including Foster + Partners, DR+R, Marco Balich and MAD Architects.

Lecture in person at HS11, Faculty of Architecture

Faculty of Architecture, Institute of Design
Lightweight Structures Unit
Technikerstrasse 21c, 1st Floor
6020 Innsbruck, Austria  

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