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Materials: The Latest Architecture and News

Learn How to Avoid Energy Loss in Your Buildings

07:00 - 24 June, 2019
Learn How to Avoid Energy Loss in Your Buildings, ELEMENTAL's UC Innovation Center subverts the traditional office building, forming a glazed lobby in its interior, and creating fewer openings. Image © Nico Saieh
ELEMENTAL's UC Innovation Center subverts the traditional office building, forming a glazed lobby in its interior, and creating fewer openings. Image © Nico Saieh

Thermal comfort becomes very evident when it is not attended to. When thermal conditions are adequate in one location, our body is in balance with the environment allowing us to perform activities normally. On the other hand, when a space is too hot or too cold, we soon see changes in our mood and body. Dissatisfaction with the thermal environment occurs when the heat balance is unstable, that is when there are differences between the heat produced by the body and the heat that the body loses to the environment.

How to Choose the Right Glass for Your Projects

08:00 - 22 June, 2019
How to Choose the Right Glass for Your Projects, Town House in Antwerp / Sculp[IT]. Image © Luc Roymans
Town House in Antwerp / Sculp[IT]. Image © Luc Roymans

Today, improvements in glass processing technology have made it possible to render specific and effective solutions for a wide range of architectural projects. In fact, there are so many options available that it's almost necessary to research different products and their properties, and how this will impact, for example, the windows and doors that you are designing.

What variables should be considered – and prioritized – when choosing the glass used in a project? How can aesthetics coincide with function and efficiency? We sat down with the experts at Cristales Dialum to delve into the complex world of glass and to better understand the hows and whys of choosing the best type of glass for your projects and ensuring the best results for your clients.

Adaptative Plans: An Algorithm That Predicts Spatial Configurations

07:00 - 20 June, 2019

Automation has finally reached our desks. If just a few years ago we believed that technology (including robots) could replace the work done by humans, minus the design specifications and some 'creative' aspects, we were wrong.

The algorithm, Finch, generates different spatial configurations according to predetermined parameters as you change the total area of ​​the space. This helps to define zones in the initial stages of the project, which can then be refined according to the specific requirements of the assignment. The algorithm has been developed by BOX Bygg and Wallgren Arkitekter and written in Grasshopper, for now.

Terrazzo is Back: Production, Installation, and Samples in Architecture

04:00 - 20 June, 2019
Focal Length / RENESA Architecture Design Interiors Studio. Image © Suryan//Dang
Focal Length / RENESA Architecture Design Interiors Studio. Image © Suryan//Dang

Terrazzo is made by combining a cement base (sand, water, and cement) with a mixture of ground minerals - like marble, granite, and quartz - and can be applied to almost any surface, vertical or horizontal. The technique, produced using a completely hand-crafted method, was used worldwide in the construction of modern buildings and is noted for its durability, resistance (to water and abrasion), and easy maintenance. This made it a go-to material in the creation of flooring for houses and the common areas of residential and office buildings.  

Today, terrazzo is experiencing a revival as one of the key trends in contemporary architecture. Here, we will discuss the whats and hows of terrazzo and illustrate some of its uses in current projects. 

Focal Length / RENESA Architecture Design Interiors Studio. Image © Suryan//Dang Casa Salmen / Office S&M. Image © French + Tye Apartamento Copan / Sabiá Arquitetos. Image © Pedro Vannucchi Parisienne / Miriam Barrio Estudio. Image © Maria Pujol + 24

21 Projects Where Kengo Kuma (Re)Uses Materials in Unusual Ways

04:00 - 30 May, 2019
21 Projects Where Kengo Kuma (Re)Uses Materials in Unusual Ways, Mont-Blanc Base Camp / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image Courtesy of Kengo Kuma and Associates
Mont-Blanc Base Camp / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image Courtesy of Kengo Kuma and Associates

Kengo Kuma uses materials to connect with the local context and the users of his projects. The textures and elementary forms of constructive systems, materials, and products, are exhibited and used in favor of the architectural concept, giving value to the functions that will be carried out in each building.

From showcases made with ceramic tiles to the sifted light created by expanded metal panels, passing through an ethereal polyester coating, Kuma understands the material as an essential component that can make a difference in architecture from the design stages. Next, we present 21 projects where Kengo Kuma masterfully uses construction materials.

V&A Dundee / Kengo Kuma and Associates. Image © Hufton+Crow Camper Paseo de Gracia / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © ImagenSubliminal GC Prostho Museum Research Center / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © Daici Ano Archives Antoni Clavé / Kengo Kuma & Associates. Image © 11h45 + 44

Download 14 BIM ‘View Templates’ for Expressive Floor Plans

07:00 - 28 May, 2019

BIM is bringing 3D information technology to the work of floor-planning. Many 3D models rendered on traditional floor-plan platforms don't show the same level of detail and complexity as ones that incorporate BIM technology. For this, it is necessary to develop configurations that allow for the creation of an expressive and detailed floor plan that gives the best possible view of a project.

In this article, you will find an architectural file from Revit that features a series of configured View Templates. Made especially for architects who are newcomers to Revit and BIM methodologies, this file will allow you to incorporate View Templates into your Revit projects, allowing you to better showcase the ideas and concepts behind your designs.

Roof Waterproofing with Water: A Solution by ‘Brasil Arquitetura’

04:00 - 28 May, 2019
Roof Waterproofing with Water: A Solution by ‘Brasil Arquitetura’, Cortesia de Brasil Arquitetura
Cortesia de Brasil Arquitetura

During the modern period, the buildings that used the traditional sloping roofs with tiles, draining the waters as quickly as possible, have begun to give way to the well-known 'waterproof flat roofs.' In spite of delivering a clean aesthetic to the project, allowing the use of the last slab as a space for living and contemplation, this solution can become a headache for its occupants if its execution and design are not careful. It is no accident that there have been infiltrations in famous modern buildings, such as the Vile Savoye or the Farnsworth House, designed by great masters of architecture. Currently, the civil construction industry has developed more sophisticated products and techniques that drastically reduce the chances of subsequent infiltration. However, we could say that waterproof flat slabs continue to be fragile points in buildings. The architects from Brasil Arquitetura have improved an inventive and very simple solution to avoid infiltrations in flat slabs, much used in the 70's by architects like Paulo Mendes da Rocha and Ruy Ohtake, filling them with vegetation.

15 Projects of Steel Stealing the Show

07:30 - 24 May, 2019
15 Projects of Steel Stealing the Show , © Iwan Baan
© Iwan Baan

The use of steel in architecture is considered as one of the most innovative construction developments in history, allowing architects to create structures in scales they never thought they could. Fast-forward a few centuries, and steel remains as one of the most crucial materials in architecture. But there is a lot more to the material than just tensile strength and durability, some architects were well-aware of steel's potential and transformed it into lighting fixtures, facades, decorative elements, and finishes.

Here are 15 projects where architects looked beyond steel as structural support and explored its diverse possibilities in architecture.

© Ket Kolektif © Markus Hattwig © Juan Alberto Andrade © Edmon Leong + 16

Urban Farming: Food Production in Community Parks and Private Gardens

06:00 - 18 May, 2019
Urban Farming: Food Production in Community Parks and Private Gardens, Casa Torre / Andrew Maynard Architects. Image © Peter Bennetts
Casa Torre / Andrew Maynard Architects. Image © Peter Bennetts

As urban dwellers become more aware of the environmental impacts of food production and transportation, as well as the origin and security of what they consume, urban agriculture is bound to grow and attract public and political eyes. Bringing food production closer, in addition to being sustainable, is pedagogical. However, generally with small size and other restrictions, the concerns of growing food in cities differ somewhat from traditional farming.

Urban gardens can occupy a multitude of places and have varied scales - window sills and balconies, slabs and vacant lots, courtyards of schools, public parks and even unlikely places, such as subway tunnels. They can also be communitarian or private. Whatever the case, it is important to consider some variables:

No Restaurante Tuju, projeto de vapor arquitetura + Garupa Estúdio, todos o paisagismo é feito com espécies comestíveis. Image © Pedro Napolitano Prata Cortesia de US Department of Agriculture Planter Box House / Formzero. Image © Ameen Deen Urban Farming: Food Production in Community Parks and Private Gardens + 19

Upcycling Wood: Disused Materials Transformed Into Valuable And Useful Objects

07:00 - 17 May, 2019
Upcycling Wood: Disused Materials Transformed Into Valuable And Useful Objects, 'Taburetes Sociales'. Design by Curro Claret, Arrels Fundació and collaborators. Image © Juan Lemus
'Taburetes Sociales'. Design by Curro Claret, Arrels Fundació and collaborators. Image © Juan Lemus

The need to substantially reduce our impact on the planet must be translated into a significant change to our lifestyle and habits. One of these is to consume responsibly and consider that waste does not exist, but that all material can be transformed into something useful again following a circular ecological system.

In his book Upcycling Wood, Reutilización creativa de la madera, the architect and artist Bruno Sève writes and edits a non-exhaustive guide of the uses and possibilities of recovered wood, as a framework for responsible reuse; from small scale, such as furniture or artists' canvases, to medium scale, with its use in interiors and facades. This book seeks to raise awareness among professionals and citizens in general through analysis of the life cycle, examples of uses and finishing processes, leading to an ecological and responsible framework. The book is illustrated by numerous design and architecture teams who follow the guidelines of ecological design with reclaimed wood.

Hotel Lobby and Nishi Grand Stair Interior / March Studio. Image © John Gollings 'San Cristóbal', by Bruno Sève. Image © Bruno Sève © Uhuru Recycling Woodstore. Image © The Community wood recycling + 20

Indoor Pools: Bringing the Tranquility of Water to Interiors

04:30 - 14 May, 2019
Indoor Pools: Bringing the Tranquility of Water to Interiors, © Valentin Jeck
© Valentin Jeck

Within architecture, water evokes sentiments of calmness and wellbeing. The element has influenced design through its dynamic and fluid nature. With recent technological advances, architects have created some of the most strategic, innovative, and unexpected intersections of design and H2O.

Below, we have provided a roundup of indoor pools that highlight the application of water in different spaces, showing its relationship to materiality and use.

This collection is one of many interesting content groupings made by our registered users. Remember you can save and manage what inspires you on My ArchDaily. Create your account here.

© Mariela Apollonio © Yoshihiro Koitani + Aby Helfon y Ramón Helfon © Héctor Fernández Santos-Díez © Vinicius Nunes + 30

This Innovative Cooling Installation Fights Soaring Temperatures in New Delhi

04:00 - 14 May, 2019
This Innovative Cooling Installation Fights Soaring Temperatures in New Delhi, © S. Anirudh
© S. Anirudh

This installation is a bespoke attempt to simplify and reinterpret the concept of air-conditioning, understanding that standardized solutions may not be universally applicable given the constraints of cost and surrounding environment. Using computational technologies, the team at Ant Studio has reinterpreted traditional evaporative cooling techniques to build a prototype of cylindrical clay cones, each with a custom design and size.

© S. Anirudh © S. Anirudh © S. Anirudh © S. Anirudh + 17

Designing Ventilated Façades Using 3.5 mm Porcelain Tiles

08:00 - 12 May, 2019
Designing Ventilated Façades Using 3.5 mm Porcelain Tiles, Cortesía de Grespania
Cortesía de Grespania

The ventilated façade is a construction solution that uses a double enclosure distanced from each other by a support structure to generate an air chamber for ventilation. This operation creates a chimney effect that activates air currents by convection, improving the acoustic and thermal insulation of the building, and increasing its energy efficiency.

Due to its nature and manufacturing, the 3.5 mm porcelain tile is a great choice for ventilated façade cladding. Its high resistance to weathering, dimensional stability, and lightness reduce the support structure requirements. It weighs 3 times less than a traditional porcelain tile and allows large formats, up to 3.6 meters, reducing the number of joints. It also delivers high color stability, impact resistance, and low maintenance over time.

Cortesía de CHC Cortesía de Grespania Cortesía de Grespania Cortesía de CHC + 29

Accordion Doors And Windows: Opening Façades To The Outside

07:00 - 9 May, 2019
Accordion Doors And Windows: Opening Façades To The Outside, © Nelson Kon
© Nelson Kon

As ingenious solutions for environments that require additional space and ventilation, articulated or accordion doors and windows operate by folding their leafs one over the other and onto the sides of the opening. They moving via upper and lower rails which can be embedded into masonry and allow separation and integration rooms while adding aesthetic value to the project.

This system generates a similar effect to that of a sliding door or window, but it differs in that all its leafs remain in the same plane when they are closed, giving a clean appearance to the façade.

Aluminum Foam Facades: Architecture Rich in Texture, Porosity and Brightness

06:00 - 6 May, 2019
CaixaForum Sevilla / Vázquez Consuegra. Image © Jesús Granada
CaixaForum Sevilla / Vázquez Consuegra. Image © Jesús Granada

Modular coatings for facades and enclosures typically deliver fast and efficient solutions. However, many times they lack richness and character since they are repeated infinitely, without relating to the architectural design and its different functions and requirements.

These aluminum foam panels are manufactured through an air injection process in molten aluminum, which contains a fine dispersion of ceramic particulate. These ceramic particles stabilize the air bubbles, and create aluminum foam panels which provide an interesting level of detail and variability, generating unique facades with different levels of texture, transparency, brightness, and opacity. These ultralight panels can be used as flat architectural sheets, are 100% recyclable and available in standard sized formats up to 3.66 meters long (custom longer panels also available). 

Alusion™. Image Cortesía de Cymat Technologies Ltd. Alusion™. Image Cortesía de Cymat Technologies Ltd. Alusion™. Image Cortesía de Cymat Technologies Ltd. Alusion™. Image Cortesía de Cymat Technologies Ltd. + 20

How To Create 3D Environments From Images Taken With Drone

04:00 - 6 May, 2019

This video tutorial will teach you how to create detailed, 3-D environments from images taken by drones, using Photogrammetry to better contextualize our architectural projects.

The video covers the entire process, from flying the drone to using the RealityCapture software, including identifying plants and trees through an application for mobile phones and lastly viewing the architecture in 3D using Lumion.

Reaction And Fire Resistance: How Are Materials Classified In The Event Of A Fire?

04:00 - 1 May, 2019
Reaction And Fire Resistance: How Are Materials Classified In The Event Of A Fire?, Conceptual Diagram. Image Cortesía de ArchDaily
Conceptual Diagram. Image Cortesía de ArchDaily

In case of fire, protecting the lives of people is the most important. All occupants of the building should have the opportunity to evacuate on time, and the time available depends largely on the materials chosen and their behavior during fire exposure.

In order to facilitate and optimize this process, the European Union has adopted the Standard EN 13501 [1], introduced in the 2000s, which specifies a series of classes that determines the anti-fire properties of different materials. Their classifications are unified and compared based on the same test methods, and are currently used as a reference in many countries around the world.

Because of the architect’s role in choosing materials for projects, we have compiled the most important nomenclature to better understand the level of security of our built environment.