About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 1726-1737
Publication year: 2009
ISBN: 978-84-613-2953-3
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain


E. Daponte1, A. Lawton2, R.M. Johnson3

1Norwich Univeristy (UNITED STATES)
3Engineering Ventures (UNITED STATES)
This paper provides a general overview of an innovative building technique called fabric forming and illustrates the immense potential of the construction techniques. The concepts of tension forming and its application to the design and construction of rectilinear and curvilinear wall forming will be discussed as it relates to sustainable and contemporary design in a quickly developing rural and historical region of New England, the Mad River Valley.

The practical application of fabric forming allows for more complex shapes and structural configurations than previously possible. Replacing rigid formwork panels and casting forms with a flexible polyolefin textile membrane allows for the economical production of simple and sophisticated concrete members with increased structural efficiency and exceptional physical beauty. The permeable fabric membrane allows air bubbles and excess bleed water to move through the membrane wall, resulting in increased strength and durability of the concrete. The concept of the fabric membrane as a “skin” over the form skeleton can produce sophisticated details responding both to bioclimatic site requirements and a local vernacular aesthetic. Fabric formwork techniques can be designed to conform to precise structural requirements resulting in a significant reduction in materials used. The immense potential of fabric forming includes constructing high efficiency, engineered structures, an alternative vernacular aesthetic to post and beam residential construction, and an accessible and economical construction methodology for underdeveloped communities.

Finally the paper will report on a one-week educational and collaborative workshop to be held in August 2009. The techniques are uniquely accessible to a broad, public audience. This one-week event will bring together the world's leading innovators in the field to share techniques and strategies, while forming and pouring a series of concrete architectural components that allow for high efficiency, thermally massive, durable and sustainable structures. Participants include researchers, architects, builders, and students of design.
author = {Daponte, E. and Lawton, A. and Johnson, R.M.},
series = {2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2009 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-613-2953-3},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Madrid, Spain},
month = {16-18 November, 2009},
year = {2009},
pages = {1726-1737}}
AU - E. Daponte AU - A. Lawton AU - R.M. Johnson
SN - 978-84-613-2953-3/2340-1095
PY - 2009
Y1 - 16-18 November, 2009
CI - Madrid, Spain
JO - 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2009 Proceedings
SP - 1726
EP - 1737
ER -
E. Daponte, A. Lawton, R.M. Johnson (2009) EXPERIMENTATION WITH FABRIC FORMED CONCRETE, ICERI2009 Proceedings, pp. 1726-1737.