“melodramatic columns of light” // architectural engineering (production & parts) - study, Eindhoven University of Technology, 2014
The first assignment of this course was linked to the 6th Concrete Design Competition on Elegance. One of the phases of this assignment was all about the actual feasibility of your design and the extent to which you manage to combine technical and esthetic quality into your design.
I found out that the best way of doing so is to perform an experiment. In this experiment I built two different segments out of concrete for the columns to be produced to test if the columns could be made exactly as I imagined them. The result of the experiment was that the columns needed to be strengthened on the inside. Below, I will explain the solutions to this problem.
Firstly, in a building the biggest pressure is at the bottom and that is where my column is the smallest. This can be solved by using higher ‘C’ levels, different aggregates and more reinforcement at the bottom of my column and lower ‘C’ levels and less reinforcement at the very top, making my construction as light as possible.
Secondly, the segments must be physically connected to each other, by using rebar and filling mortar instead of wooden sticks.
Thirdly, if I am using the column in a building it is best to use a bearing facade so that the column only needs to carry its own weight.