Ultramodern Spatial Sculpture Relies on DIAB Composites

15 April 2014

Ultramodern Spatial Sculpture Relies on DIAB Composites

Virtual Tectonics 1, a sophisticated three-dimensional sculpture developed by The Bureau of Advanced Tectonics (BAT) and built by Hahlbrock has been constructed using DIAB’s composite technology.

According to DIAB, the 2.3 meter high sculpture consisting of three blades with a diameter of almost 8 meters and sitting in front of the gates to the CFK Valley Stade some kilometres away from Hamburg, Germany, is a real eye-catcher.

“The sculpture is supposed to describe the link between the formal language of contemporary architecture and the structural possibilities of new and diverse materials”, explains Arnd-Benedikt Willert-Klasing, one of the architects at The Bureau of Advanced Tectonics (BAT), the architectural firm in Hamburg that lies behind this futuristic work of art.

DIAB says, through the combination of carbon fibre reinforced plastics (CFRP) and glass fibre reinforced plastics (GFRP), this lightweight sculpture changes appearance depending on angle of view. It opens and closes, framing different perspectives and virtually transforming in front of the viewer.

This creation was manufactured by Hahlbrock, a specialist for large-sized composite and sandwich structures, with the support of different partners of the CFK Valley Stade, a competence network for high performance composites. DIAB sponsored the project by supplying material.  To achieve ultimate strength, the choice was Divinycell H80.

Hahlbrock used advanced computer-aided engineering technologies like CAD, CAM and CNC supported milling of the DIAB core material to efficiently translate the architectural model into the real sculpture.

Being lightweight, DIAB explains that Virtual Tectonics 1 can easily be taken apart. The blades can then be transported separately and re-assembled in less than a day. The combination of free shape, high strength and low weight can only be achieved using composite materials.

The sculpture was first shown in August 2013 at the international building show IBA and the International Garden Show (IGS), both in Hamburg. After these two exhibitions it was moved and put in the front of the entrance to the CFK Valley Stade, Germany, where it will stay for a year and a half.

Photo provided by DIAB

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