van Brummelen / Embedded Movement

Embedded Movement Responsive Shape-changing Surfaces

Author: Paula van Brummelen, TU Berlin - PEP Programm entwurfsbasierte Promotion & weißensee kunsthochschule Berlin

Supervisor: Ignacio Borrego Gómez-Pallete, Prof. Dr., TU Berlin; Ralf Pasel, Prof., TU Berlin; Christiane Sauer, Prof., TU Berlin in cooperation with Kunsthochschule Berlin Weissensee

Research stage: Initial doctoral stage

Category: Artefact


The PhD project Embedded Movement deals with the development of flexible surface systems, which are capable of detecting changes in their environment and reacting to them with movement by seamlessly integrating shape-changing materials. The project investigates how the functional potential of kinetic surface structures can be increased without affecting the flexible quality of the surface and its reduced construction.

Currently, 3D printing and casting processes are used within Embedded Movement to precisely integrate shape memory alloys (SMA) into surfaces, so that the property of SMA to minimally shorten when heated can be used for surface movements. The thermosensitive properties of the FGL actuators, and the resulting possibility of energy-autonomous function, are extended with touch-sensitive capabilities by imprinting conductive material.

Within the CA2RE+ LJUBLJANA – REFORMULATION Event, current investigations regarding the influence of material combinations and surface structure on the type of motion, the overlay of deformation potentials and movement and behavior studies will be presented.

Keywords: Programmable Matter, Shape-Changing Composites, Adaptive Architecture, Animate Materials