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Adaptive Architecture

2023 // 

In this paper, a new climate-responsive building model is explored that utilizes the inherent responsiveness of hygroscopic materials and the instability associated with water content to construct bionic adaptive building skins. The biomimetic façade system combines the hygroscopic behaviors of pinecones with the changes in its scale opening (dry) and closing (wet) according to the humidity gradient. The principle of using the natural hygroscopicity of a maple wood veneer to passively respond to fluctuations in the relative humidity of the environment is exploited in this model. This research project consists of four key stages: (1) material system research; (2) maple wood veneer material simulation and physical programming calculation; (3) maple wood veneer bilayer prototyping at different scales; and (4) final large-scale hygrosensitive façade (hygrofacade) development. The hygrofaçade expands and contracts in response to weather humidity changes, resulting in dynamic and responsive building elements without mechanical or electronic sensing. This innovative approach enhances energy optimization, strives to counteract the influence of the external climate on the building of interior temperature, and exhibits an agile response to fluctuations in external humidity levels. Finally, by exploring the principles of biomimicry and moisture absorption, the hygrosensitive façade demonstrates a promising advance in sustainable building design, and it has important implications for the future of environmentally climate-adaptive building shells.

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