Lightweight tensile structures outstand as an exemplary field that revolutionized architectural technology and engineering in the early 70Â´s, while having established new frame conditions and methodologies regarding cooperation between architectural and engineering disciplines in practice and research. Cable-net and membrane structures form-finding process is directly related to aesthetic, functional, structural and construction aspects from early stages of the design. The structures geometry is revised in an iterative process of form finding until an equilibrium form under the imposed stress requirements of the members and boundary conditions has been reached. The origin of lightweight tensile structures and the initiation of numerical methods of analysis that enabled the realization of the roof structure of Munich 1972 Olympics-Arenas frames three phases of developments in the area: design and computational analysis, design optimization and automated manufacture, and open loop multivariable systems performance based design. The specific projects succession of technology driven design processes are reviewed from the perspective of an interrelated syntax of architectural and structural design. Integration of the architectural and structural engineering disciplines is undoubtedly acknowledged in practice and research, due to its potential to apply a heterogeneous set of discourses and types of knowledge, through cyclical and comprehensive processes of development. In addition it enables further interdisciplinary advancements in terms of advanced performance based research or technology transfer within the built environment.
Last date updated on June, 2014