Octatube employee wins Student Steel Award

Koos Fritzsche, recently graduated and engineer at Octatube, has won the Student Steel Award 2013 in the category: research.  His project, 'Gridshell Efficiency Optimization', is a complex and comprehensive studies with the objective to optimize gridshells. 

Gridshells are a grid of beams in the shape of a free-formed, doubly-curved structural system. Through their organic and form-active configuration, gridshells combine expressive architectural freedom with the ability to span large distances, making efficient use of materials.
The application of the Iterative Stiffness method during the structural design of a gridshell significantly increases the achievable efficiency and saves materials and costs. The method is parametric and allows for quick and well-founded variant studies of geometry and composition for a wide range of structural systems. Combining aesthetics with structural functionality, the derived method serves both the architect and structural engineer. Through this combination, the efficiency of the design and structural validation stages can also be increased, further saving development costs of the gridshell. The accessibility of the optimization method reduces the complexity of gridshell design, calculations and optimization. Thus a possible increased use of gridshells in the field of structural design is stimulated.

The project has been published in the October edition of the 'Building with Steel' magazine, initiator of the competition. The jury was deeply impressed with the high complexity and level of abstraction in the research.


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