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Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

The “Pure Tension” Volvo Pavilion is a joint venture of Synthesis Design + Architecture, Buro Happold and Fabric Images. This tensile structure is a lightweight, rapidly deployable, free-standing membrane, a portable charging station, commissioned by Volvo Car Italia. The membrane is an experiment, developed through a process of rigorous research that investigated methods of associative modeling, dynamic mesh relaxation, paneling, geometric rationalization and pure material performance. It illustrates the dialogue between design, engineering and fabrication.

Through synergy of dynamic form, optical effects and flexibility, the structure aims to reinvent the typical trade show pavilion. The very structure is highlighted by a uniquely sensual and continuous form composed of a tensioned HDPE Mesh skin with embedded PV panels and a perimeter ring made of carbon fiber rods. Organic form of the structure encourages visual and spatial interaction while simultaneously enabling different configurations to accommodate a variety of activities including vendors, demonstrations and car trade shows. The form of the pavilion is both aesthetically pleasing and efficient, and it is conceived as an extension of the legacy of Frei Otto’s seminal lightweight tensioned membrane structures.

Very contemporary issue of sustainability is addressed in the form of power strategy – fabric embedded photo-voltaic panels and light collected from the sun and indoor artificial lighting are both used to power the pavilion and charge the V60 model on show. The car plugs in directly into the skin of the structure, and the battery charges. The ‘Switch to Pure Volvo” pavilion becomes a symbol of the V60’s attitude to efficient energy consumption and a showcase of the Hybrid V60’s characteristics.

Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

 

Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

Volvo, SDA, Synthesis Architecture + Design, V60, Frei Otto, tensile structure, sustainable design, sustainability, Italy, membrane structure, membrane, organic form, Buro Happold, Fabric Images

 

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