SLINKY(BOT) - BIOGENIC ORGANIZATIONAL TAXONOMIES

DESIGN RESEARCH LAB (M.ARCH) - ARCHITECTURAL ASSOCIATION

The slinky(bot) behavioral system is an autonomous self-assembly and self-aware design system. It aims to provide an alternative approach for living, that extends on the ideas of materially and geometrically elastic, endless and ever-evolving architecture. It is specifically important to our team that the slinkybots are companions in the house that are emotive, and have their independent life cycles that are symbiotically intertwined with the human lifecycle creating an environment that grows and adapts with its users.


The system consists of poly-scalar relationships for reasons for functionality and experience. It initiates from the lowest level of organization and communication, the unit scale. Within this scale, concepts of singular entity morphology were researched resulting in a dual-state slinkybot, a compact state and an extended one. The compact state explores mobility and structuring mechanisms, while the extended state introduces concepts of spanning, transparency and a higher level of complexity.


The slinkybots are designed to be aware of each other, their surrounding environment and the human and are able to respond at the level of an individual unit and a collective one.

 

At the aggregation scale, the units collectively work together through different modes of communication to achieve different organizational taxonomies. Across the lifecycle of the slinkybot system, more complex body plans are developed and differentiated for reasons of specialization. They specialize to create functional landscapes, lighting organizations, and sensory habitable spaces that are interactive and playful, living in parallel with the human.


At a high population scale, the system addresses space making strategies and reconfigurable frameworks inspired to create an ecology within the Eames House, that represent its original values of playfulness, surprise, iteration, adaptability, and sustainability. These values are reinterpreted, to what we think, corresponds to the technological advancements of our current time.

Studio Master:

Theodore Spyropoulos

Tutors:

Apostolos Despotidis

Mustafa Al Sayed


Group members:

Aya Riad
Joumana Abdelkhalek

Hanbing Zhao

Qin Xia

Software:

Arduino IDE 

Grasshopper (Scripting)

Processing (Coding)

Rhino (3D Modelling)

Maya (Animation)

Fabrication:

3D Printing (PLA + TPU)

Laser Cutting

Silicone Casting

Heat Pressing

Microcontrollers

Sensors

Actuators

UNIT SCALE

UNIT TO UNIT SCALE

OVERALL HOUSE SCALE

UNIT TO HUMAN SCALE

DEVELOPMENT OF PROTOTYPES

PNEUMATIC MECHANISM

DISSECTION DIAGRAM

CORE AIR MUSCLE

A segment of multi chamber, inflatable pockets was developed to create the extendible with the ability to expand and change its orientation. The main core air musle is responsible for the overall expansion and opening up and closing of the slinkybot. The segments inflated in sequence result in a mono-directional, straight translation.

ORIENTATIONAL AIR MUSCLES

Orientational air muscles are needed to change the direction of the slinkybot’s expansion. Each orientational muscle can be triggered separately or together to perform the required choreography for a specific task. When all orientational muscles are inflated it results in a further straight expansion.

INFLATABLE SOFT SKIN

The soft skin is composed of multi-chambered inflatable pockets that have the cpability of deforming using pressurized air for different purposes. Corner inflatable pockets transform the geometry of slinkybot from a more sphere-like form to a more cubic one which is more stable and more useful in stacking techniques. While, other pockets are responsible for the breathing of the unit giving it a further step of sensitivity to human contact.

MOBILITY

SELF-STRUCTURING

POP-UP FUNCTIONAL LANDSCAPES

The slinkybots first level of complexity is developed when they understand that the human exists as a physical boundary. Their first task would be basic clustering, and then simply opening to establish functional landscape/seating. In order to be able to create those landscapes, the slinkybots should understand ergonomics to be able to create different seating types and different arrangements

CEILING CONFIGURATIONS AND LIGHTING

When the units detect the presence of human, they descend to create functional lighting that is efficient and sustainable. It offers another layer of communication and interaction with the user of the house.

PARTICLE-SPRING SYSTEM CODING SIMULATION