Latin-American student designs explore future directions of tension structures/materials
For the student design challenge of the IV Latin-American Symposium of Tensile Structures held this April in Uruguay (see “Tension structures in the southern hemisphere“), entries were received from 10 student teams representing six countries. Student designs were entered from Chile, Costa Rica, Peru, Spain, Uruguay and the US.
Students were asked to submit design projects that make use of textile structures, cable structures or tensigrids. The program welcomed student projects that ranged from small to large-scale projects, stressing that they would be judged on both formal aspects and the constructability of their designs. The objective of the competition is to spread the use of tension structures and promote the teaching of such structures in Latin American universities.
The winning entry, (pictured), was “Tensowrap” submitted by students Ricardo Vivar Flores and Jenmy Tataje Vivanco from the University of San Martin de Porres, Peru. Combining a number of structural concepts—funicular curves, Voronoi polyhedra cell systems, tensegrity systems, and string figures—Vivar Flores and Tataje Vivanco aim to create a safety net to save lives of people involved with road accidents on provincial Latin-American roads that have sharp bends. Tensowrap would help mitigate these frequent accidents and is to be constructed of Kevlar cables and metal masts anchored securely into the roadside slopes.
Judges for the competition were professor Juan Monjo-Carrió of Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain; Nicholas Goldsmith, FAIA, of FTL Design Engineering Studio, New York City, USA; and architect/professor Gerry D’Anza, of University of Naples, Italy.