imagine 02



Marcel Bilow
Delft University of Technology
Tillmann Klein
Delft University of Technology
Ulrich Knaack
Delft University of Technology


cover imagine 02 deflateables


Pneumatic structures have been thoroughly investigated and developed during the 1960s. However, the energy crisis and aesthetic developments stopped the process of employing these structures as a mainstream construction method. Nowadays these structures are typically used in special areas of architecture and design. Imagine-Deflateables concentrates on the very limited knowledge of vacuum constructions and develops a range of aesthetic, technical and functional design possibilities. Until today, there has been a very limited number of designs developed and realized using pressurized constructions – despite the fact that this technology could lead to positive aspects: the air pressure of the earth can be used as a stabilizing and form-giving parameter, creating a specific and inspiring shape. In addition, the very nature of this technology offers varying degrees of thermal and acoustic insulation. There are of course weak points such as potential leakage and the need for high pressurization of the construction; but new material technologies and specific structural concepts will provide solutions to overcome these issues. Exploiting the possibilities of extremely light and, at the same time, energetically active constructions, deflateables are one of the promising fields of architectural and design developments. The chance to create structures that can move and react to requests such as user and climate requirements as well as formative demands, lifts this topic onto the level of a realistic and usable technology for as yet unknown design possibilities.


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vacuum constructions, thermal insulation, acoustic insulation, deflateables, design, construction


1 December 2008



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ISBN-13 (15)


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Physical Dimensions

170mm x 240mm