SCHOOL OF ARCHITECTURE, PLANNING AND LANDSCAPE
MASTER OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN THESIS
ADVISED BY JOSHUA M TARON AND GUY GARDNER
Penrose Panels investigates the fabrication of bespoke concrete cast panels using reusable sand moulds to reduce waste during manufacturing. The exploration aims to demonstrate how customized products can achieve circular design goals of low embodied energy as well as layer additional complexity to heighten a design's aesthetic performance.
The procedure started by abstracting imagery using Penrose fractal subdivisions from which toolpathing was created and executed in sand using various 3D printed and laser cut end effectors held by a robotic gripper. Using the two rhomboid shapes that the Penrose pattern is based upon, two shapes of modularized moulds were created to hold loose sand and come apart with ease in order to be reused in the production process. After the robotic arm drew unique patterns in the loose sand, latex was sprayed on the moulds to provide a hard coat for casting concrete. The panel system also utilized the common angle found at the intersection of the Penrose Panels to define a standardized connection plate. Jigs were created from this geometry to define where to embed fasteners into the concrete during the casting process.