parametric design workshop 2010

Here are some selected images of a 5-week design workshop held by and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute School of Architecture and the Politecnico di Torino Faculty of Architecture II.

Design approach is based on the ecophysiology of animals. Students research and analyze an animal’s mechanism for  thermoregulation, photoperiodism, water economy, and other energetics exchange, and develop an architectural integumentary system that deals with heating, cooling, ventilation, and lighting, which, when combined, accounts for almost 70% of all electricity consumption in the US.

Extensive parametric and analysis tools are used for the design of these projects, all of them can be found on my website here.

Workshop Instructors
Ted Ngai, RPI
Cesare Griffa, PoliTo

Workshop Coordinator
Graziella Roccella, PoliTo

Workshop Description
The parametric workshop engages the problems raised by our rapid pace of urbanization and the ecological impact of our built environment, using two main drivers: the evolving of digital technologies, and the growing of ecological awareness.

Digital technology plays a critical role in acknowledging change and difference in the way we design, build and live architecture. Ecological awareness, on the other hand, requires one to observe and understand the behavioral tendencies of our natural and built systems. The use of parametric design software in this context will enable designers to use design not only as an organizational device serving semiotic, pragmatic and aesthetic functions, but also as a regulator of the internal and external environments, managing bioclimatic flows to maintain homeostasis through intelligent morphologies.

In this framework, the workshop program will develop a Physiological Skin, a concept that explores the “envelope” as a mean to capture, transform, store and distribute various energetic flows to maintain a stable internal environment appropriate for housing in the city of Torino.

The Physiological Skin will not only take on the bioclimatic exchange as its main design challenge, but will also consider the aesthetic vision as it is situated in the historical Italian neighborhood. This includes addressing the Renaissance and Baroque, and times of new discoveries and new aesthetics, which will also be main criteria for the successful development of the project.


(RE)TENDER | John Baker |  Frank Florian | Chris Nobes | Salvo Terranova

ADAPTIVE RESPIRATION | Marco Caprani | Alexandra Dorn | Cesar Madrigal | Andrea Terreno

SUSTAINA(BUBBLE) | Alyssa Johnson | Christos Constantinou | Giulia Mondino | Marco Palma

ALGaeRITHM | Monica Cazzamani Bona | Jillian Crandall | Nathalia da Rosa Pires | Tyler Hopf

AQUALIBRIUM | Angie Ohman | Sarah Murray | Marina Milia | Matteo Miroglio

PASSIVE FLOWER | Christine Koch | Alicia Miksic | Matteo Tron

SHARK SKIN SMART SKIN | Davide Speranza | Evelina Micono | Kate Lisi | Kateri Knapp

BARE NECESSITIES | Matteo Amela | Gianni Bruera | Morgan Danner

3 Responses to “parametric design workshop 2010”

  1. Ivo Semerdjiev says:

    very nice work.

  2. bes says:

    oh my god.
    this is amazing.
    is it possible maybe to upload the grasshopper definition?

  3. ted says:

    Every GH definition used for the workshop can be found on the website, and we mainly used the component population and the solar ones. Have fun with them!