Structure, Material, Tectonics and Space

Wolf Mangelsdorf
Architecture, Structural Design
2022W, scientific seminar (SEW), 3.0 ECTS, 2.0 semester hours, course number S04299


The production of most of our current building materials requires large amounts of energy and produces unsustainable levels of carbon polluters. What are the emerging alternatives? What are the new materials that are being researched and tested?

More importantly, what impact do they have on the tectonics of our buildings. What are the structural constraints and opportunities, and what does that mean for the types of architecture and spaces we create with them?

Following an introduction into the history of new materials and their effect on the development of structural engineering and architecture, groups of students will research new materials and material strategies, the associated construction and building techniques that are emerging and their impact on structure and architecture. Small design examples should be used to highlight the potential.

We intend to collect the research produced, over time building up a compendium of new materials, and the associated approaches to structural design, tectonics and architectural space.

Examination Modalities

The examination will be oral with a year end presentation of the research work prepared over the duration of the course. 

We will require a written submission of the research material. 

There will be a mid term review.

Active participation in the seminar will be considered in the final grade.



The introductory lecture will be in person over two days. Attendence is required if you want to do this seminar.

Key Words

Structural Design, Material, Construction Methods, Tectonics, History, Material Science


12 October 2022, 09:00–13:00 Seminar Room 27 , "Introduction "
09 November 2022, 09:00–11:00 Seminar Room 27 , "Mid Term Review"
23 November 2022, 09:00–11:00 Seminar Room 27
15 December 2022, 09:00–10:30 Seminar Room 20 , "Preliminary Finals"
12 January 2023, 10:45–12:15 Seminar Room 20 , "Finals"

Course Enrolment

From 12 August 2022, 10:36 to 07 October 2022, 23:59
Via online registration

Architecture (Master): Expertise: Architectural Science: Structural Design 443/002.02

Co-registration: possible

Attending individual courses: possible