VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university

VUILD’s project for Educational Incubation Center at Tokyo University

 

VUILD has crafted a parametric space named The LEARNING ARCHITECTURE FOR LEARNERS, designed as an open laboratory where anyone can experience advanced manufacturing technology. Initiated by the Educational Incubation Center Explayground at Tokyo Gakugei University, Japan, the structure takes shape as an organic roof, utilizing reinforced concrete and cross-laminated timber (CLT) as formwork. It incorporates CNC-machined wood beams and panels to create a distinctive finished surface referred to as ‘residual formwork.’ VUILD’s parametric team employs a geometric algorithm to generate a CAD model, facilitating the creation of a CAM path for 5-axis CNC machining. Pre-cut components are manufactured in VUILD’s factory using a 5-axis CNC machine and later installed in the completed building. The building aims to function as an open facility, providing individuals with the opportunity to engage with advanced manufacturing technology and actively participate in creating their own spaces.

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university
roof shape that mimics the veins of leaves found in nature, all images by Takumi Ota

 

 

Formulating Innovative Learning Spaces

 

The design challenge was to create an open, adaptable space for new public education, serving as both a learning environment and an expandable, formless area. VUILD (see more here) opted for a large-span versatile space using a 5-axis CNC milling machine. The constraint was cutting CLT panels up to 240 mm thick, requiring repeated simulations to optimize overall shape and cut-out convenience, considering construction logistics. CLT beams were designed with a sine curve in the longitudinal section, creating a strong shell with a roof shape mimicking leaf veins. The shell’s depth was achieved with a zigzag pattern in the cross-section, and strength was added by shifting phases in three layers. The 3D CLT panels were cut in VUILD’s factory, joined on-site to the beams, and connected with metal fittings.

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university

 

 

Concrete was poured into the beams, forming beams on the veins and an 8 cm thick slab covering the spaces. This innovative construction method has been patented as JP 2021-042568, reducing costs to 60% of the normal shell construction method. Streamlined digital fabrication with 5-axis machining features required optimization, with paths created specifically for 5-axis cutting. A parametric team developed a geometric algorithm for free-form surfaces, enabling automatic generation of CAD documents. Path creation flow was designed to minimize manual machining. An algorithm for automatic panel placement and shape generation efficiently placed parts in different thicknesses of CLT panels, facilitating optimization for both structure and construction convenience. 

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university
large openings allow for indoor/outdoor connections. The site surrounding the building has plenty of room for future expansion

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university
the building will be used as an open laboratory where anyone can experience advanced manufacturing technology

 

 

vuilds-organic-roof-using-clt-formwork-as-a-finished-surface-2-65adec74b8942

four different thicknesses between 60 and 210 mm were used to create the formwork, which functions also as an exposed ceiling and beams

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university
the wooden beams have a span of 25 m, and the concrete slab is only 8 cm thick

vuilds-organic-roof-using-clt-formwork-as-a-finished-surface-3-65adec74b8958

the space is open not only for the researchers but also for the local residents and children to experience

VUILD's parametric architecture emerges as open laboratory at tokyo gakugei university
the lighting design was planned to emphasize the movement of the beams through numerous tests

 

 

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full view of the formwork. the vein-like grooves act as beams
full view of the formwork. the vein-like grooves act as beams
CLT formwork and rebar placement. panels positions were double checked on site with a 3D model using hololens
CLT formwork and rebar placement. panels positions were double checked on site with a 3D model using hololens
thickness and evenness of the concrete was controlled by a experienced carpenters
thickness and evenness of the concrete was controlled by a experienced carpenters
verification of mockups at the VUILD’s in-house factory using AR technology
verification of mockups at the VUILD’s in-house factory using AR technology

project info:

 

name: The LEARNING ARCHITECTURE FOR LEARNERS
architect:
VUILD
client:
MISTLETOE JAPAN Inc.
structural engineer:
Jun Sato Structural Engineers
fabrication:
VUILD fabrication team
construction:
Atelier Umi
lighting designer:
TILe
location:
Tokyo, Japan
photography:
Takumi Ota

 

designboom has received this project from our DIY submissions feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: christina petridou | designboom

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