Embracing natural timber features of plantation hardwood: Material-aware digital workflows in product design and development

  • YEAR
    Kotlarewski, Nathan
    Taylor, Lachlan
    Booth, Peter
    2018 Conference Papers
    Architectural Science, Construction and Technology
    Conference Papers


The adoption of digital workflows within the architecture and construction industries is wide spread. Advanced digital methods including parametric and associative tools, integrated and iterative optimisation and file-to-factory automated fabrication workflows are now common in architectural and design offices internationally. These tools offer unique, fast and flexible opportunities for designers to conceptualise, rationalise, communicate and fabricate a wide range of complex designs that were previously deemed too complex to produce. While there are many contemporary examples of digital workflows used in the development of architectural solutions, there are limited examples where these tools have been used to deliver architectural products with low-value materials for the built environment. There is a current market-pull for the use of timber products in Australia and a resource-push to utilise emerging low-value Australian plantation hardwood timber. This emerging resource is deemed low-value by the excessive amount of natural feature that prevent its use in structural and appearance grade products. This research demonstrates the development of unique timber architectural lining products utilising digital workflows to rapidly generate unique product design outcomes with low-value materials that can be manufactured according to user defined parameters.


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