Author Archives: 03 Jessica Werbeach

Acoustacks: Jessie Werbeach, Erin Kline, Bo Hubbard, Paul Conover

We constructed our model at roughly 1/6”=1” scale. It was made out of 40 layers of laser-cut 2mm corrugated plastic, out of which were cut parametric holes which were slightly distorted squares with the approximate dimensions of 1”x1”. Added on top of these layers was a layer of plexi-glass for stability. The layers were glued together with an epoxy. 1/16” holes were drilled through vertically to thread wires. Some of these wires merely cinched the layers together while others served the double purpose of suspending the cloud. To cinch the layers, metal wire stops were soldered onto the wire on either side of the model. Inserted at the top of each column formed by the layers was acoustical foam, the idea being that in a full-scale model, sound waves would travel up these columns and be dispersed by the foam. We suspended the whole model inside of a wooden frame to best display its lighting qualities. The construction of this cloud, besides dimensions of material, would not vary at full scale.

Architectural 3D Printing and its Sustainability Implications

My group’s research project was focused on 3D printing applications and their future potential. Individually, I focused on what was being done in the realm of architecture, focusing on how future 3D building methods could change how we think about the construction of buildings, especially their sustainability.

Currently, there is a race going on in the world of 3D printing—the race to build the first 3D house. Houses with components made of 3D-printed items have been built before, but the idea is to build an entirely customized living space. This, in the future, would present a lot of advantages, including the idea of building a house with no waste material that would have to be transported and would fill up landfills. Another hope with 3D printing is that in the future, people would be able to use, in replacement of typical 3D printing materials, recycled materials. This would give all new purpose to old plastic bottles and milk jugs, especially when we take into consideration machines that are now on the market to help with this task. The Filabot is an invention geared towards such a purpose. Originally a Kickstarter project, the Filabot is a device that has several different temperature settings for several different materials. These include PET, HDPE, LDPE, PP, and O, or other plastic types, such as gas cans, DVDs, CDs, and sunglasses. This makes the machine very versatile.

Making houses out of recycled materials would also mean that if a house needed to be moved or modified, there is the possibility of just taking the house itself and melting it back down into 3D printing materials and re-printing another house or part of a house the way you want it to be at that time. This could have a lot of implications in the way that we think about buildings and their temporary versus permanent qualities. Suddenly it may be that designers, rather than designing buildings to be versatile and have longevity of purpose, will design buildings in a way that makes them easiest to reconfigure and re-form.

I focused on one project in particular: a canal house in Amsterdam that is being by the Amsterdam-based firm, Dus Architects. The house will be printed on site by a 19’-8” tall printer that is built inside and old shipping container and goes by the name of KamerMaker, Dutch for “room-maker”. The printer prints first horizontally and then vertically, layering the printing material up in layers that bond to each other. Each component will be printed first at 1:20 scale and then at full scale. The pieces will be made out of varying types of plastic and wood fiber materials and will link together much in the way that Legos link together, with steel cabling to then run through the pieces and cinch them together. The printer will make everything in the house, constructing the exterior and interior down to the furniture that will sit in the rooms.

However, what has not been fully considered at this point is how the more complicated aspects of building a house will be handled. For example, not much consideration has been given to mechanical systems or plumbing. As stated above, the materials that are being used for the canal house are mostly plastic and wood, and these do not have good insulating qualities. We have a long way to go before we can make truly functional 3D buildings.

Project A- Phase 2 Werbeach Kline Hubbard Conover


p1_Jessica Werbeach_03

Common Weathers is a project by the New-York based studio SOFTlab. Visitors are engaged as they send questions and comments via text message to a database. Common interest in a topic is reflected in lighting changes to the interactive lighting system embedded in the installation.

According to the article, “the translucent-like surface above and the pulsing of the interactive lighting around each lower ring are meant to operate like a 
weather system, a system with eddies, tangencies, turbulence, and static, much like the way ideas are formed in communities of people, 
neighborhoods, classrooms, nations, etc.”

Each of the more than 5000 white mylar panels has been custom-fabricated with lasers and has been uniquely labeled. The panels are held taut with CNC cut wooden rings on the top and bottom. The top wooden rings are larger than the bottom wooden rings, so as the pattern rises up from bottom to top, the shapes are shown as if stretched and separated. This allows for increasing transparency towards the top of the installation.

The set-up of the rings encourages central concentrations under the “eddies”, creating spatial segregations that allow each to become its own station where people can gather. However, as you will see in the pictures, these stations are not entirely physically independent. The versatile panel shape and panel connections allow for easy transitions where one is joined to another.

Because of these interesting components, this type of design has a lot of flexibility, allowing for customized environments involving differences in privacy and spatial subdivision.