Sushant Verma and Pradeep Devadass of the AA School of Architecture in London, United Kingdom present adaptive[skins], an investigation into responsive building skin systems. These skins adapt to the dynamic environmental conditions to regulate the internal conditions in a habitable space over different periods of time by exhibiting a state of motion and dynamism. Heat and light are the primary parameters for regulation, leading to energy efficiency and dynamic spatial effects.
Passive and active skins using shape memory alloys and pneumatic actuators are developed through investigations of smart systems that integrate smart materials and smart geometries. The precedents in this domain have rarely dealt with individually controlled multiple parameters of heat and light in a single system, which is attempted in this project. Owing to the complexity of the multi-parametric system, genetic algorithms are developed for system optimization and calibrated with physical prototypes at varied scales. The developed systems are tested against two distinct climatic models— New Delhi and Barcelona, and evaluated for performance, based on heat and light, which are quantified as solar gain and illuminance as principles, and daylight factor for evaluation purpose. The use of genetic algorithms makes the problem solving faster and accurate. New tool-sets are developed in the process by combining various digital tools, to create a real-time feedback and memory loop system.