The assignment was to replicate the logic behind of a parametric façade of our choosing and generate a pseudo code and a Grasshopper script.

The Zahner Factory Expansion was designed by Crawford Architects back in 2011. The façade consists on a series of panels vertically oriented that create a wavy aspect thanks to the noise generated by the smooth curvatures of the panels.

Tutorial and comprehending the logic of creating a façade.

Comprehending the logic of creating a façade as the Zahner Factory Expansion was a challenge mainly because the movement of the panels. in order to understand the movement, I research on different ways of achieving these geometries and the best was a script to create a parametric bench with a series of panels on the Z plane.

In order to understand the script, I reversed engineered the process to altered the façade and the movement with different parameters and techniques.

Creating the Pseudo Code.

1.Create an arch.

2.Establish the length on the X plane.

3.Generate a series of frames on the surface according to the X plane.

4.Establish the main point of the frames created on point #3.

5.Use a series of slider to change the location of the point on the X and Y plane.

6.Create a series of numbers out of the points generated before.

7.Create a 3D object from the series of numbers.

8.Take the average of the point to generate a smother surface.

9.Create a new surface from the points generated on #8.

10.Slide the new surface in the amounts of sections desired.

11.Extrude each section the amount desired using a slider.

12.Close the volumes using the cap command.

Test #1 Points of Attraction.

After creating the surface, I used 4 points of attractions to move the panels and affect the height creating 4 different typology of panels giving the impression of movement on the façade.

For more movement I think using more point of attraction would have created a better pattern, and maybe a more similar façade to the one of  the Zahner Factory Expansion.

Test #2 Image Sampler.

Test number 2 was interesting because the use of the image sampler gives a nice movement if you chose the right image with the right pattern.

The movement generated by the image sampler creates a smooth and continuous movement witch works perfect on the façade.

I know it’s not exactly the same as the Zahner Factory Expansion but it mainly because of the image I choose, the right image should be able to replicate the effect of that factory.

Test # 3 Image Sampler + polygon.

The principle of this test is the same as the one in test #2 using an image sampler, but for an additional distortion I use a polygon on the YZ plane to create a different effect.

To be honest I didn’t know what to expect when doing test # 3 but at the end it works fine. Its nothing like the factory façade but the logic behind it is the same, to have a series of panels and create noise trough the XZ plane of the panels.


For every façade I think there are many different ways of achieving the end result, it’s just a matter of moving the parameters and understanding the logic of what you want to generate.


Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia

MAA02 2018-2019.

Faculty: Rodrigo Aguirre, David Leon and Danil Koshelyuk

By: Ricardo Lichtle


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