After analyzing different skin systems we decided that the “folding iteration” was the best approach towards the gridshell. It consists of a 2’ x 2’ square with a scored-diagonal that allows movement to the panel. Each panel has two folded sides that sits on the structure and attach the panel to three joints.
Material: Translucent Coroplast
The properties of this material allow the skin to be adapted to the shape of the gridshell, whether is closed for transportation or fully open at the site. It also has additional advantages of being low cost, waterproof and lightweight.
The only disadvantage of the coroplast is its corrugated structure that lets water run into the panels. But this issue will be resolved by covering the edges with water-resistant tape, adding an extra detail to the skin.
In terms of installation, we first analyzed the idea of attaching the skin in between the structure. This approach gives more stability to the skin, but becomes an issue of transportation since the structure does not close completely. And it is very likely it will also affect the shape of the gridshell.
For this reason, we decided to attach the skin at the top of the grid structure. It allows the panels to move freely and gives the gridshell more flexibility. Moreover, the structure can be fully closed without deforming the shape of the panels while the module is being transported.
The combination of several skin iterations led the team into what is now the final skin prototype for the gridshell.
-Two folding edges