Jill Blakey, Joyce Hanlon, Christine Carlo, Evan Baum Niehoff Installation Description

Niehoff Installation Description

Our team chose to address the acoustic problems the Niehoff Design Studio was facing by creating a suspended cloud form. By manipulating a line into a wave-like form in the parametric design software, Maya, the frame fork for our cloud covering was achieved. A series of ribs were then arrayed along this path to create a waffling effect, which helps to create a more acoustically stable atmosphere for the studio and a more stable construction for suspension above the space. The three structural supports are to be made out of glulam wood in order to achieve the bends in the supports and to address points of torque. The ribs then are to be constructed of a sturdy acoustic felt that achieves the desired sound qualities of the space. By suspending three of these constructions, the valleys and peaks of the generated form work in tandem to create high points for sound to travel to for longer distant conversation and low points where small group discussion is necessary. The physical suspension of this form would be accomplished by using steel suspension cables attached to the wood frame from the exposed ceiling structure above. It must me noted that the weight of this form is not distributed evenly and would therefore require excess support at certain points. This would ensure a twisting motion would not cause the cloud to fail. This acoustic study revealed that it is possible to achieve a more stable acoustic environment and that a mass of this scale and construction method may not only be idea for this particular installation space, but for other acoustically challenged spaces as well.

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