In the field of structural engineering, lightweight and resistant shell structures can be designed by efficiently integrating and optimizing form, structure and function to achieve the capability to sustain a variety of loading conditions with a reduced use of resources. Interestingly, a limitless variety of high-performance shell structures can be found in nature. Their study can lead to the acquisition of new functional solutions that can be employed to design innovative bioinspired constructions. In this framework, the present study aimed to illustrate the main results obtained in the mechanical analysis of the echinoid test in the common sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus (Lamarck, 1816) and to employ its principles to design lightweight shell structures. For this purpose, visual survey, photogrammetry, three-dimensional modelling, three-point bending tests and finite-element modelling were used to interpret the mechanical behaviour of the tessellated structure that characterize the echinoid test. The results achieved demonstrated that this structural topology, consisting of rigid plates joined by flexible sutures, allows for a significant reduction of bending moments. This strategy was generalized and applied to design both freeform and form-found shell structures for architecture exhibiting improved structural efficiency.

Flexible sutures reduce bending moments in shells: from the echinoid test to tessellated shell structures

Marmo, Francesco;Langella, Carla;
2022

Abstract

In the field of structural engineering, lightweight and resistant shell structures can be designed by efficiently integrating and optimizing form, structure and function to achieve the capability to sustain a variety of loading conditions with a reduced use of resources. Interestingly, a limitless variety of high-performance shell structures can be found in nature. Their study can lead to the acquisition of new functional solutions that can be employed to design innovative bioinspired constructions. In this framework, the present study aimed to illustrate the main results obtained in the mechanical analysis of the echinoid test in the common sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus (Lamarck, 1816) and to employ its principles to design lightweight shell structures. For this purpose, visual survey, photogrammetry, three-dimensional modelling, three-point bending tests and finite-element modelling were used to interpret the mechanical behaviour of the tessellated structure that characterize the echinoid test. The results achieved demonstrated that this structural topology, consisting of rigid plates joined by flexible sutures, allows for a significant reduction of bending moments. This strategy was generalized and applied to design both freeform and form-found shell structures for architecture exhibiting improved structural efficiency.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/895028
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