This evening the Summum Thesis Award will be handed out to most innovative and inspiring graduation thesis. In addition to the award, the winner will receive a prize of €500. Furthermore, the audience will decide who else takes home the Summum Audience Award.
During the contest, the finalists will present their graduation thesis in a series of 5-minute presentations, where each presenter must use 20 slides, which auto-advance every 15 seconds. After all presentations, the jury will then announce the winner of the Summum Thesis Award. The jury will consist of the symposium's speakers.
Below you can find summaries of our eight finalists' theses.
Rayaan Ajouz - Cost-optimized welded steel trusses
Rayaan studied civil engineering at TU Delft, specializing in building engineering. He is currently a researcher at Bouwen met Staal and structural engineer at ABT.
Thesis title: Optimising production costs of steel trusses: A computational approach of designing cost-effective steel trusses with welded connections
The design process of steel structures is fragmented. The engineering firm designs the structure and later the steel contractor designs the detailing. Engineers often optimise for weight, but this may require more complex joints to be developed. This can lead to a higher total cost of the steel structure, compared to when joint design would have been incorporated at an early phase. A parametric optimisation workflow was developed combining Karamba3D and IDEA Statica Connection. The former allows for structural analysis and defines cross-sections through size-optimisation. The latter then checks all joints and plates, and is used to optimise the welds.
Ivneet Bhatia - 3d-printed cast glass moulds
Ivneet studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in building technology. He is currently looking for a new challenge.
Thesis title: Shaping transparent sand in sand: Fabricating topologically optimised cast glass column using sand moulds
The complexity in fabricating thick cast glass structural elements due to high annealing time and cost has limited the use of glass in its purest form in architecture and the construction industry. To explore the full potential of cast glass as a structural element, a topologically optimized structural glass column with a main focus on its fabrication process has been explored. Moulds made from sand can be recycled completely just like the glass cast in it, making it cost-effective. Additively manufactured sand moulds were experimented upon, with different types of binder systems and surface finishes.
Joris Burger - 3d-printed, thin-shell concrete formwork
Joris studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in building technology. He is currently pursuing a PhD at ETH Zurich.
Thesis title: Eggshell: Design and fabrication of non-standard, structural concrete columns, using 3D printed thin-shell formwork
A problem which is typically prevalent in combining thin 3D printed formworks with concrete, is that fresh concrete exerts hydrostatic pressure, causing the formwork to rupture and fail. In this concept, this is avoided by having a thin-shell formwork robotically 3D printed while an accelerated concrete is simultaneously fed in. In this way, a 1.5mm thin 3D printed shell can be used as a formwork. The printed formwork could also be recycled and reused, making the process fully circular. The fabrication process was developed to a point where it is feasible to produce elements of a relatively large scale.
Layla van Ellen - Sustainable in-situ Mars habitats
Layla studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in building technology. She is currently a researcher at TU Delft.
Thesis title: Building on Mars: Research on In-Situ Resource Utilisation (ISRU) for a sustainable habitat
A habitat on Mars must protect its crew from its harsh environment. As resources on Mars are scarce, a surprising material stands out: water. In-situ natriumchloride is proposed as reinforcement to withstand extreme temperatures. Various extremely cold experiments were carried out to research how ice can be improved for robotic construction. This led to the design of the Ice Hab: two ice domes built using 3D printing. The ice is gradually formed by small strong layers. The structure to repairs itself during construction as any cracks are filled by newer layers, expanding upon freezing and reinforcing the structure even more.
Erron Estrado - Wind-optimized complex high-rise geometries
Erron studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in building technology.
Thesis title: Optimisation of complex geometry buildings based on wind load analysis
One result of climate change is the increasing strength and frequency of wind events. This creates a problem for the increasing number of high-rise buildings, many of which are of unconventional shape. However, current methods for calculating wind response either do not account for these geometries, such as the Eurocode, or are prohibitively expensive and time-consuming, such as physical wind tunnel tests. To address this issue, a computational method was developed to analyse the structural effects of wind on a building and optimise the external geometry to reduce those effects in an early design stage.
Gabriel Garcia Gonzalez - Interactive urban planning design
Gabriel studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in geomatics. He is currently an architect and parametric modeller at FORM.
Thesis title: An interactive design tool for urban planning using the size of the living space as unit of measurement
In urban planning, one of the common units of measurement for population density is the amount of households per hectare. However, the actual size of the households is seldom considered, neither in 2D nor in 3D. A method is proposed to calculate the average size of the households from existing urban areas based on available open data and to use it as a design parameter for new urban developments. A prototype tool was made to semi-automatically generate design scenarios. Significant differences among the resulting design proposals were encountered, meaning that the average size of a household plays a major role.
Tom Godthelp - Timber reciprocal frame structures
Tom studied at TU Eindhoven, specializing in structural design. He is currently looking for a new challenge.
Thesis title: Timber reciprocal frame structures
Reciprocal frames are structures that are feasible by means of circulating shear, compression or tension interactions between their constituent members. This relation indicates that beam depths and connections correlate to the structural geometry. To date, a combination of reciprocal frame form finding that regards both beam depths and structural design of connections has not yet been developed. A new form finding method is presented for reciprocal frames that includes the structural design of beam dimensions and detailing. A parametric model is developed to design three- and four-member reciprocal frame assemblies from any arbitrary NURBS surfaces.
Valeria Piccioni - 3d-printed, multi-functional facade element
Valeria studied architecture at TU Delft, specializing in building technology. She will start as designer and building engineer at Inbo.
Thesis title: The AM envelope: A mono-material facade element with complex geometries for structural and thermal performance produced by additive manufacturing
The facade is one of the most complex parts of a building as its role of separating the outside from the inside requires different performances to be tackled. An additively manufactured multi-functional facade element is proposed, that embeds multiple functions, without having to rely on the assembly of different layers and components. Its spatially-varying cellular geometry provides stiffness for the most stressed parts and takes advantage of low thermal conductivity of air to provide thermal insulation. Physical testing and software simulations were carried out and a digital workflow was developed. Fabrication was assessed through prototyping using a large-scale 3D printer.
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