The research team at the Politecnico di Milano school of architecture designed and built a fully 3d-printed pavilion inspired by the microstructure of bones. The Trabeculae Pavilion is an innovative, lightweight prototype that explores sustainable solutions to material sourcing and uses an innovative construction technique that minimizes material use. A full-scale prototype of the project will be exhibited at the MADE Expo 2017 in Milan.

Trabeculae Pavilion, Politecnico di Milano, Made Expo 2017, lightweight structure, pavilion, biomimicry, Filoalfa, 3d printing, green architecture, biopolymer

The pavilion combines research in the field of additive manufacturing and biomimetics, addressing the issue of consumption of materials in the AEC industry. The researchers at ACTLAB research unit at the Politecnico di Milano worked together with their industrial partner Filoalfa and applied principles behind different biological models to the construction of the pavilion. As a full-scale prototype, the structure was built using a high-resistance biopolymer, with components 3d-printed with high accuracy. The team used an experimental extruder to manufacture stiff components quickly.

Related: Lightweight pavilion mimics the structure of water spider nests

Trabeculae Pavilion, Politecnico di Milano, Made Expo 2017, lightweight structure, pavilion, biomimicry, Filoalfa, 3d printing, green architecture, biopolymer
Trabeculae Pavilion, Politecnico di Milano, Made Expo 2017, lightweight structure, pavilion, biomimicry, Filoalfa, 3d printing, green architecture, biopolymer

“We looked into nature to understand how lightweight and resistant structures work with a minimized material use. Studying the internal bone microstructure, we have created algorithms which allow us to generate three-dimensional cellular structures, varying in topology and size, with the precision of a tenth of a millimeter.”

+ ACTLAB

+ Filoalfa

+ MADE Expo 2017