by Mingxuan Qin (MAUD ‘20), Jichao Sun (MAUD ‘20) and Jiayi Wang (MAUD ‘20)

This project is a form exploration through mathematical functions. Using periodic function, with “sin” and “cos”, we “write” a wrap around coil as prototype. This coil origins from one 2-dimensional strip, which transform into a 3-dimensional cylinder-like volume. By adjusting the vertical gap on each period and making the coil swing horizontally periodically, self-intersections appear. These intersections give the form a special structural character, which makes the coil able to support itself. Eventually, a 2D stripe becomes random stacked volumes, aesthetically.  The width of the strip is set to be increasing from the bottom to the top, which makes it closer to human scale at the bottom and larger at the top to fit the visual perspective.

The structure is tested through the physical model. The “walls” are composed of museum boards on exterior and plexi in the middle, which are bolted together. Three types of joints are applied. First, at the exterior corners. An “L”-shape metal plate is inserted into the middle of the “walls” on each side and bolted together. Some of the interior cross-intersections are also joined together in the same way. Others are free standing notches that are not fixed to adapt the whole structure to the shear forces. This project explores both the aesthetic and structural character and their relationships to a certain form.