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4D printing: as an alternative manufacturing technique for complex generative forms and formworks in both single and mass-customization

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2019
Cangir, Fethi Can
The advances of digital possibilities created an environment where fabrication of form and formwork techniques reconsidered with digital terms. As a new research field in digital fabrication, primarily additive manufacturing has particularly attracted the attention to fabricating complex generative form and formwork. Presently a new and promising technology, however, is not too far off that may take additive manufacturing to a new dimension. With the recent advancement in material sciences, new approaches to additive manufacturing have also drifted to material focused operations; therefore, programable material applications with 3D printing technology revealed the term of 4D printing. As an alternative manufacturing technique, 4D printing implemented to fabricate complex forms to prove its potentials for single or mass-customized fabrications, especially in computational and generative systems. A fabrication process, including digital and physical phases, is experienced where several design disciplines are combined to generate a feasible fabrication process. For the computational form-finding process, the curved-crease folding technique utilized to create developable three-dimensional generative forms. A digital model also experimented by printing vi the active composites with different principles. Accordingly, self-transformation process of the printed active composite structures tested to prove the concept. The results show that 4D printing of curved-crease active composite structures promising to be utilized as formwork and form as it is to fabricate complex generative surface structures for single or mass-customized architectural scenarios. The fabrication experiment has also provided a source to generate a 4D printing fabrication process.