Topic outline

  • The course Design of Structures_Basics is an introduction into fundamental concept of structural equilibrium and inner force flow and its application to the design of building structures. Graphic Statics, a vector-based approach, is used to visualize the underlying geometric logic of the inner force flow. First principles are discussed and their use for an architectural approach to the design of building structures is illustrated. The course consists of weekly lectures, quizzes and readings, complemented by a building analysis.

    Teaching within the course will be conducted remotely and complemented by face-to-face meetings for the analysis of the selected building!


    Course Intro


    2.11.2021 Equilibrium

    • Lecture_1 (pdf)
    • Exercise_1
    • Reading_1: Form and Forces, Chapter 1

    9.11.2021 Form & Force

    • Quiz_1 (solution)
    • Lecture_2 (pdf)
    • Exercise_2
    • Reading_2: Form and Forces, Chapter 2

    16.11.2021 Principle of Duality

    • Quiz_2 (solution)
    • Lecture_3 (pdf)
    • Exercise_3
    • Reading_3: Form and Forces, Chapter 8
    • 3d-Drawing in Rhino (Input by Luka Piskorec)

    23.11.2021 Tension & Compression

    • Quiz_3 (solution)
    • Lecture_4 (pdf)
    • Exercise_4
    • Reading_4: Form and Forces, Chapter 13

    30.11.2021 Force Distribution

    • Quiz_4 (solution)
    • Lecture_5 (pdf)
    • Exercise_5
    • Reading_5: Form and Forces, Chapter 10

    7.12.2021 Design with Forces

    14.12.2021 Submission of building analysis

    Recommended Reading

    Bjørn N. Sandaker, Arne P. Eggen, Mark R. Cruvellier: The Structural Basis of Architecture, Routledge, 2011 (2. edition)

    Aurelio Muttoni: The Art of Structures, EPFL Press, 2011

    Edward Allen, Waclaw Zalweski: Form and Forces: Designing Efficient, Expressive Structures, Wiley, 2009

    Heino Engels: Structural Systems, Hatje Cantz, 1997

    Some Videos on Graphic Statics

    On Youtube you can find a series of six introduction videos into the geometric logic of cable structures using graphic statics by Brian Storey. They describe elementary constructions in a step-by-step way.

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    Grading of the course

    Grading is based on weekly quizzes (50%) and the final building analysis (50%).