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Winery Gantenbein

Augmented Bricklaying, Kitrus, 2019
Augmented Bricklaying
The Kitrvs winery façade is built of 13596 bricks. It is currently the largest project entirely assembled on-site with an interactive design system and augmented reality interface. Using a custom made dynamic optical guidance system developed by researchers of ETH Zürich, local masons in Greece constructed the 225m2 large façade in less than three months. The highly articulate brick walls demonstrate how Augmented Bricklaying combines the advantages of computational design with the dexterity of humans, supporting an entirely new way of fabrication.

The project "Weingut Gantenbein" by Gramazio Kohler Research from 2006 proves that robotic systems are very suitable to achieve intricate brickwork designs with high efficiency. Nevertheless, standard robotic arms come with limitations, such as limited mobility and dexterity, or the handling of certain building materials such as mortar. This is why Gramazio Kohler Research reintroduced the craftsmen back in the digital fabrication process. By optically instructing masons via digital pointers, a direct connection to a digital design model is made. Following such digital instructions, the masons no longer depend on physical templates. In addition, this process enables masons to work with enhanced spatial precision, while preserving and capitalizing on their craft and expertise in mortar handling. The technological innovation and the craft-specific user interface developed in Augmented Bricklaying allow masons to understand intuitively where to place the bricks according to the digital design. This novel custom-developed system uses visual-inertial object tracking features and real-time feedback to precisely relate what has already been physically built to the digital model, and exceeds the accuracy of conventional holographic representations used as state of the art in this domain.

Winery KITRVS:

Kitrvs winery is located in the hilly landscape of Pydna, overlooking the Thermaic Gulf of the Aegean Sea. The newly constructed building will be used to process and store wine, produced in the surrounding vineyards. The semi-transparent parametric façade design reflects the idea of an ever-changing façade pattern resembling the shimmering light of liquid. Gaps between the individual bricks allow for ventilation and control the strong sunlight entering the building. Derived from a Perlin noise field, the design for the brick walls was achieved through a variety of applied mortar heights. In contrast, the individual rotation of the bricks correlates with the amount of the underlying mortar. That way mortar, usually treated as secondary material in the design of fair-faced brick walls, became a defining element in the appearance of the façade.

Gramazio Kohler Research, ETH Zurich

Client: KITRVS Winery / Garypidis
Collaborators: Dr. Kathrin Doerfler (project lead), Daniela Mitterberger, Dr. Timothy Sandy, Foteini Salveridou, Fernando Cena, Lukas Stadlmann, Lefteris Kotsonis, Eleni Alexi, Dimitris Ntantamis
Consultancy: Dr. Nebojsa Mojsilovic, Structural Masonry, ETH Zurich
Selected experts: Dr. Tobias Bonwetsch, ROB Technologies
AR-Tracking-System von

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Gramazio Kohler Research
Chair of Architecture and Digital Fabrication
ETH Zürich HIB E 43
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