materials + tectonics 

Project Partner: Christina Griggs

Project Partner: Priyanka Rajani

Project Partner: Srimoyee Sinha 



The Class investigated the tectonics of several buildings as precedent for re-transformation. In this specific exercise, Kolon One & Only facade by Morphosis became a point of reference for the transformation. Before suggested alterations can be made to the tectonics, the class analysis details of the precedent given, and presented a set of comprehensive drawings. After the analysis, the transformation is made to a “chunk” of the original detailed building. 

There are 4 different types of sun shaders, this modular façade attaches at 3 different moment connected points. The material of the sun shaders includes a mix of fiber reinforced polymer called Aramid. Each module was routed and then used to create a mold. The GFRP was vacuumed-molded inside from 2 halves. The halves were joined together with glue and screws to com- press and create the final module. This technique was pre-fabricated and assembled on the site of the Kolon One & Only Tower.

The connection of the sunshades includes a layered mullion system that attaches to a series of steel brackets. This detail is responsible for holding up the sun shader system made by Morphosis. The steel plate host three connections, those three connections being a portion of the GFRP sun shaders that hook onto the steel plate. This system is repeated on the front facing facade of the building.

What is proposed after is a material change from GFRP TO ERTFE. In the Kolon One and Only Tower, the GFRP panels had two major functions: sun-shading and cross-bracing the facade. The proposal addresses these two issues while bringing other additional benefits. First, in terms of sun-shading and visibility, the ETFE will be covered in a custom frit pattern, thus allowing for an even higher degree of specificity than the GFRP offered. Second, the ETFE system is one of tension and as such makes it suitable to function as cross-bracing on the diagonal of the curtain wall. The additional structural benefits of ETFE are regarding wind. The lightweight quality of the material and its ability to deform under live load make it particularly suited to dampening wind. This is especially an asset as the Kolon tower is in an area prone to monsoons. ETFE also brings with it a higher degree of sustainability than GFRP. Where GFRP may collect dust and need to be cleaned, ETFE is non-stick and self-cleaned by rain. The double-layer inflated ETEFE panels follow a similar formal gesture as Morphosis’ GFRP panels. There is an outfitted frit to on the ETFE panels and curtain wall systems to control and harness sun exposure.