Author Archives: 05 Ross Battoclette

CNC_Digital Design & Computation

Part of the research that I did was about the CNC machines that we have available at the University of Cincinnati and do some trials with one of the machines. Specifically looking at the Autoprofiler and how that can be utilized to be able to produce an interesting form. One of the first thing that I wanted to try and mill was a scaled topography of my studio project site.  The process took some trial and error to be able to produce topography from contour lines in Rhino and export it into a surface that would be suitable for Powermill.  I started out in Rhino trying to extrude each of the individual closed contour lines as masses stacked together, like building a topography by stacking up pieces of cardboard. This didn’t work out too efficiently when I exported the file to Powermill. This is because even though the topography was meshed together in Rhino, Powermill still treated each one of the layers individually which caused the tool path to not be efficient and not smooth.  I was able to fix this by instead of extruding the contour lines; I extracted all of the points from the contour lines and then used the patch command to create a surface.  From there I extruded the surface down and then Boolean difference a box that gave me a flat bottom. This method produced an efficient tool path but the topography had more of a gradual smooth change versus a dynamic one that I was looking for.

Since I didn’t like the way the topography turned out, I next wanted to try and produce an interesting form created from a grasshopper script.  I wanted to try and create a ripple, such as a water drop on a smooth pond that creates ripples. I researched and thought about how I would be able to create this form. From what I found the easiest way to accomplish this would be to use a sine wave. I created a grasshopper script that used the sine function to interact with a point from which the ripple would originate. From there I extruded the surface much the same way I did the topography and scaled the form to fit in the limits of the Autoprofiler.

I exported the file as an .iges file and opened it up in Powermill from which I was able to produce the tool paths.  Powermill was fairly easy to use because of the tutorials that are detailed on the RPC wiki pages. As long as you follow the guidelines, setting up the file for a CNC machine is simple and straightforward.  Also, setting up the Autoprofiler machine to run is straightforward as well because of the tutorial on the wiki page.

Using the Autoprofiler as a way to mill out a form or topography is straightforward and not very time consuming.  From my experience there are only a few problems that I can see with using the Autoprofiler. The bed size of the machine is small so you have to scale down the model or cut out multiple sections. Also, it is only able to cut out Styrofoam or urethane foam.  The last thing is that since it is 30 years old it isn’t very efficient and can take a long time to cut something out.  But I do think that this machine is a great resource for students, and something that should be taken advantage of.

P1_Ross Battoclette_05

C_Wall -Ohio State University

This is an installation at the Ohio State University. This project explores honeycomb and voronoi geometries and their ability to produce interesting structural, thermal, and visual performances. It uses a point cloud that is taken from a bitmap image to create the cells on a massing structure. From there each of the cells are voided from their centroid (distance based on parameters) and then panelized.  From there the panels can be laid out to be cut by CNC, Laser, etc.

I think that a project like this could be transformed and used in a variety of settings. Changing the materials and parameters would allow for endless options of shapes and spaces to be created. The simplicity of this design makes it easier to create an appealing form that can be applied to any space. I think it is relevant to our project because of its use of parametric design to create an installation that serves a purpose for any space.