Architectural geometry

Helmut Pottmann, Michael Eigensatz, Amir Vaxman, Johannes Wallner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Around 2005 it became apparent in the geometry processing community that freeform architecture contains many problems of a geometric nature to be solved, and many opportunities for optimization which however require geometric understanding. This area of research, which has been called architectural geometry, meanwhile contains a great wealth of individual contributions which are relevant in various fields. For mathematicians, the relation to discrete differential geometry is significant, in particular the integrable system viewpoint. Besides, new application contexts have become available for quite some old-established concepts. Regarding graphics and geometry processing, architectural geometry yields interesting new questions but also new objects, e.g. replacing meshes by other combinatorial arrangements. Numerical optimization plays a major role but in itself would be powerless without geometric understanding. Summing up, architectural geometry has become a rewarding field of study. We here survey the main directions which have been pursued, we show real projects where geometric considerations have played a role, and we outline open problems which we think are significant for the future development of both theory and practice of architectural geometry.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-164
Number of pages20
JournalComputers and Graphics
Early online date26 Nov 2014
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2015

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Discrete differential geometry
  • Fabrication-aware design
  • Paneling
  • Support structures
  • Polyhedral patterns
  • Statics-aware design


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