What are "Kinetic Buildings"? | The B1M

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03:15   |   Apr 05, 2017


What are "Kinetic Buildings"? | The B1M
What are "Kinetic Buildings"? | The B1M thumb What are "Kinetic Buildings"? | The B1M thumb What are "Kinetic Buildings"? | The B1M thumb


  • Kinetic buildings can reposition parts of their structure to change their appearance,
  • to create different useable space or to respond to environmental conditions.
  • Technically it’s a concept that’s been around for centuries, from bridges
  • that can raise allowing ships to pass, right back to the first drawbridges that appeared on castles.
  • But now, in the 21st Century, advancements in mechanics, environmental systems
  • and robotics are opening up new frontiers.
  • Abu Dhabi’s Al Bahar Towers feature responsive façades that shade its glazing from the intense sunlight.
  • The computational design team at Aedas Architects simulated how the facades
  • operate across different seasons and incidence angles in a virtual environment
  • before there were manufactured and installed on site.
  • The façade’s form is based on a ‘mashrabiya’ – a traditional Islamic lattice shading device.
  • At 145 meters, the Al Bahar Towers are one of the world’s largest examples
  • of kinetic elements in building.
  • Sharifi-ha House in Tehran features three rooms that can rotate through 90 degrees on
  • motorised turntables. They turn to open up views and external terraces during Iran’s
  • intense summers and move back into the structure to keep heat in the core of the house during winter.
  • Each room, or pod, has a door on the side enabling access to the terrace when they are open and
  • to the house when the pods are turned inwards. The terrace’s balustrades have been engineered
  • to lay flat as the pods turn inwards.
  • Another example can be seen in Yeosu, South Korea, home to the One Ocean Thematic Pavilion.
  • Constructed for the 2012 Expo, the building’s skin integrates an array of moving lamellas that offer
  • shading to its internal spaces during the day, and different lighting configurations at night.
  • They were inspired by a research project at the ITKE University Stuttgart, which investigated
  • how biological moving mechanisms could be applied on an architectural scale.
  • There are several European examples as well. The University of Southern Denmark’s new
  • Kolding Campus is wrapped in over 1,600 perforated shutters. Sensors on the building’s envelope
  • continuously measure light and heat levels and then adjust the shutters mechanically
  • through a small motor; providing optimal daylight and a maintaining a comfortable indoor climate.
  • The shutters’ triangular forms mimic that of the building’s floor plate.
  • A similar shading technique is employed at Kiefer Technic’s showroom in Austria.
  • Perforated aluminium panels adjust in accordance with sunlight angles and internal climate, changing
  • the facades appearance throughout the day.
  • Advancing technologies have also made retractable roofs on stadiums more common in recent years,
  • saving many a sporting event. The most notable is perhaps at Wimbledon in the UK.
  • Retractable pitches, enabling flexible use of stadia are also becoming more prevalent.
  • If you enjoyed this video and would like to get more from the definitive video channel for construction,
  • subscribe to The B1M.

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We look at the emerging trend of “kinetic buildings” (also known as "kinetic architecture") and explore some of the world's most impressive examples. For more videos by The B1M subscribe now - http://ow.ly/GxW7y

Read the full story on this video, including images and useful links, here: http://www.theb1m.com/video/what-are-kinetic-buildings

Images courtesy of Christian Richters, NFL, Nextoffice, SOMA / Stefan Rutzinger, SOMA, Jens Lindhe, Jorgen Weber, Giselbrecht + Partners and Flickr / Daniel0685. Footage courtesy of Nextoffice and CNBC.

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