The TRADA stand at Timber Expo 2012 is going to take your breath away. As a key partner in the timber trade's leading exhibition, TRADA is keen to make its mark and what better way than an eye-catching stand made from timber?
A team of engineers at Ramboll Computational Design (RCD) is hard at work creating a plywood sculpture inspired by a timber gridshell sculpture which spreads like a tree across the foyer of Ramboll UKs London office. Engineers at RCD are now at the testing stages, checking the connections and joins of the sculpture and ensuring that it fits together smoothly. Having optimised the form for self-weight and gravity, the engineering and design team are actually investigating the effect of accidental horizontal loads from impacts from conference attendees.
We are looking at ways in which to tweak the geometry and make it more resistant to these loads, said Harri Lewis, Design Engineer, Buildings and Design, Ramboll. These include folding the structure in the style of origami to effectively give the structure more depth. Another option is edge panels that curve along each arch boundary. Mr Lewis said these will significantly improve the buckling resistance while also providing a neat border capable of supporting a strip of LED lights.
Choosing plywood for the structure offers several advantages. It is very economical, due to new techniques in digital fabrication allowing the design and production of bespoke parts at very low cost, relative to other materials. James Latham is supplying 25 birch plywood panels to build the gridshell, while Lonza Wood Protection is providing a proven fire retardant protection through its DRICON impregnation treatment.
What TRADA is seeking to do, through Timber Expo, is to fire the imagination, and to show what is possible in timber, said TRADA Membership & Marketing Manager Rupert Scott. We want to create a structure for our own stand which is exciting both in form and in function and we are confident that Ramboll will meet and exceed this brief.
In addition to the Pavilion, TRADA will also be hosting its popular series of TRADA tours for Timber Frame and Fire, covering all relevant technologies at the exhibition which offer fire protection solutions. Attendees will then be invited back to the TRADA stand for a drink and offered the opportunity to chat with TRADA Technologys technical consultants on any wood related technical issues.
All TRADA tours will depart from the TRADA stand. The plywood sculpture will give visitors an idea of just what is possible in timber and is likely to be one of the key features of Timber Expo 2012.
For more information visit: www.trada.co.uk