Case study: optimized building footprint with VisualARQ Grasshopper Components

Thanks to the VisualARQ Grasshopper components, we are seeing VisualARQ used to further research on practical uses for Genetic Algorithms and Analysis in BIM workflows.

Vlad Vermesan, an architecture student at the Faculty of Architecture and Fine Art, NTNU, Norway has completed his thesis related to the development of a methodology of parametric suburban and architectural design utilizing VisualARQ Grasshopper Components, Ladybug, Space Syntax, Clipper and Galapagos. This level of analysis at the early stages of design clearly shows the power of #flexibleBIM enabled by VisualARQ, Rhinoceros 3d, and Grasshopper.

Vlad explains:

“My work is about parametric suburban design. I have developed many parametric models where components can be manipulated in order to conduct simulations and various multi-variable optimizations. The generic suburban architectural building, which is at the core of the methodology, gives the sensation and spatial quality of a home in all possible aspects related to form, functionality and comfort. The buildings’ forms, thanks to the parametric design method, are not common and vary depending on the neighborhood, and can be seemingly endlessly individualized.

While in urban environments intelligent shaping happens often vertically, in suburbs it can happen horizontally, because there is more space, (i.e., distance between buildings). Thus, variation and attractive architecture can be achieved by the intelligent shaping of the building footprint according to local tones, design traditions and functionality, and even optimized according to climate conditions. The process starts with some reasonable assumptions about the size of the functional units and their relationships, in order to obtain a functional and efficient ground floor. The ground floor shape is then used to run more complex simulations on both horizontal and vertical plans incorporating climate conditions.

Vlad Vermesan Case study VisualARQ

This is what the case study is about: manipulating the building footprint shape based on intelligent rules in order to maximize/minimize radiation during heating/cooling periods. The parametric building has been generated using VisualARQ Grasshopper Components: walls, windows, slabs and roofs, which provide BIM elements for the final building instead of simple extrusions from the shapes. This ensures credibility to the simulation results.

My experience is that VisualARQ integrates very well in the parametric environment bringing together spatial elements, topology, environment and optimization. Running optimization scenarios with changing building footprint shapes in 2D and seeing the resulting building in 3D almost instantly thanks to VisualARQ, is really rewarding. You can stop any time, compare different shapes and choose the one which is most appealing, not necessarily the optimum one.

In this way, the architect can add their unique style to the solutions provided by the parametric model.

The video shows that one of the solutions offers a concave footprint shape, which opens for an outdoor atrium, (inspired in the “Zeb Pilot House” project of Snøhetta architectural firm) contributing to a homely atmosphere and feeling of comfort.

Credits: Vlad Vermesan: v.vermesan.no@ieee.org


Car wash plant project with VisualARQ

Preconcept-Model
With this project, a car wash plant of nearly 200 sq meters, we are showing the work of engineer Jürgen Keil and his experience with Rhino and VisualARQ.

Jürgen got the project drawings (plans, sections and elevations) from the architect in .dwg format. He had to assemble the drawings in 3D in order to use them as a reference to create the 3D model.

Drawings assembly
According to Jürgen Keil, the biggest advantage that VisualARQ provided to the project was "the very fast generation of a rough 3D model, which led to a better communication among the relevant parties (architect, engineer and customer)."

Secondly, with VisualARQ parametric approach, he was able to develop his own solutions and modify the model in few clics. That was particularly useful for the different beams and columns whose cross section steel profiles needed to be changed constantly, as well as for the wall thicknesses.

This easy and fast way to modify the geometry sped up the project development dramatically and helped in making decisions faster.

Finally, with the help of VisualARQ, he exported the model to IFC and imported it to Revit and BOCAD to finish the final shop drawings. Once the model was exported, VisualARQ objects were used as a first draft for the final shop drawings and construction details. VisualARQ walls were used as references to create individual wall parts in BOCAD, and VisualARQ doors and windows were revised and replaced by more detailed ones.
Car Wash Plan View

Dipl. Ing. Jürgen Keil
Martin-Luther-Str. 53a
D-46284 Dorsten

E-mail: keil@keil-systemtechnik.de
Website: www.keil-systemtechnik.de

Client:
S+O Projektgesellschaft mbH
Firmensitz: Feldmarkstr.2, 46282 Dorsten, Deutschland
Geschäftsführer: Dipl.-Ing.Volker Knigge
Handelsregister Gelsenkirchen HRB 6506
USt.-Id.-Nr.:DE813122152


VisualARQ 1.9 new features webinar recorded

If you missed the "VisualARQ 1.9 new features" webinar, held on July 8th 2015, you can watch it again in the video above:

The webinar presents an overview of VisualARQ 1.9 and focuses on the latest new features and enhancements, including:

  • IFC Import & Export
  • IFC Tag and Export options
  • New Plan View features
  • New Slab object features
  • New way to insert doors and windows
  • New Curtain wall features.
  • Create columns from 3D and 2D blocks
  • Overview of VisualARQ Grasshopper Components WIP IV

Win a Rhino and VisualARQ educational license with the DTF magazine contest

DTF Magazine 660

The Designing The Future magazine (DTF) is searching for the most innovative Diploma Thesis project.

For that reason DTF has prepared a contest that will award the authors of the best projects in Spain based on the conceptual idea, the process, the software, the originality, the materials and the construction details.

A VisualARQ educational license and a Rhino educational license will be some of the awards to the best projects. You can have a look at the prizes here.

Inscription is free but only the students from spanish universities can participate in the contest. The inscription finishes the 6th of February and the results will be announced the 28th of February, during the DTF event in Palacio Cibeles of Madrid.

Designing The Future is an architectural magazine aimed at students of architecture, architects and art & design lovers, that publishes a collection of the best Diploma Thesis Projects of students of architecture.

Inscription and contest details, (in Spanish).


Trick to split a beam in different parts

There is no command in VisualARQ to split a beam in different parts. However, there is a trick to achieve that using a simple Grasshopper definition with VisualARQ Grasshopper Components.

(You need to have Grasshopper and VisualARQ Grasshopper Components installed).

Steps:

  1. Type "Grasshopper" in the command line to launch Grasshopper.
  2. Open the "Beam Split.gh" definition from Grasshopper.
  3. Right-click on the Beam Param component to assign the VisualARQ beam to the model you want to split.
  4. Define the number of parts you want to split the beam in.
  5. Bake the Beam component. To do it, right-click on the Beam component and select the "Bake" option. This operation will turn the beam preview into workable beams in VisualARQ.
  6. In Rhino, delete the original beam.

The definition simply obtains the path curve of the selected beam, breaks it into different segments, and creates new beams with the resulting segments.

The same definition can be used for VisualARQ walls, curtain walls and railings, replacing the Beam components by the corresponding object type components.

Beam split post


VisualARQ at the SCAD RhinoDay

Rhino day SCAD
When: 15-17 January 2015
Where: SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design), in Savannah, Georgia. (Map)

VisualARQ will be present at the SCAD RhinoDay that will take place next 15-17 January at the SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design), in Savannah, Georgia.
There will be a live demo and one day workshop to learn the complete features of VisualARQ.

Conferences

The event will bring together Rhino users, professors, students and software developers who will talk about their professional fields and how they use 3-D modeling and design in real life projects... From marine design, to product and furniture developing, set designs and artful architecture. Bob McNeel (Rhino), Rick Smith (RhinoBIM), Daniel Piker (Kangaroo) will be some of the presenters.

Early-bird registration fee for all the conferences (January 16-17th) is US$100.00. This is a special price valid until December 14th [ Regular price US $145.00 ].

Both, student and faculty members will receive a Rhino 5 educational license for commercial use, that has a list price of US $195.00

Workshops

VisualARQ workshop and other workshops will take place on 15th January 2015 at SCAD. The cost of each workshop is US $100.00.

Visit these pages and find out about the RhinoDAY event:

The RhinoDAY event is open to the general public. Register now! Space is limited.

For more information, please contact Jackie Nasser (jackie@mcneel.com), or call: 305 513 4445