Risorse bibliografiche
Risorsa bibliografica obbligatoria
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativa
Scheda Riassuntiva
Anno Accademico 2019/2020
Scuola Scuola di Architettura Urbanistica Ingegneria delle Costruzioni
Insegnamento 054422 - ADAPTIVE FACADE STUDIO
Docente Pesenti Marco
Cfu 6.00 Tipo insegnamento Monodisciplinare

Corso di Studi Codice Piano di Studio preventivamente approvato Da (compreso) A (escluso) Nome Sezione Insegnamento

Obiettivi dell'insegnamento

The aim of the Adaptive Façade Studio is to provide knowledge and expertise to develop architectural surfaces from conceptual design to fabrication using advanced software and tools. Daylighting strategies are used to find envelopes able to cope with energy performance, users’ requirements and architectural integration.

The course is structured in three parts: Daylighting and design of responsive skins lectures, Seminars and Digital tool tutoring and Student projects.

Daylighting and design of responsive skins lectures: lessons will be devoted to the analysis of case studies representing the behaviour of different façade typologies, focusing on geometries and movement, users’ behaviour, daylighting simulations and construction materials and technologies. 

Seminars and Digital tool tutoring: special lectures will be carried out by academic and professional experts that works on the topic of building envelopes, biomimicry and fabrication techniques. Besides, a series of lectures and tutoring sessions will be devoted to the use of computational tools i.e. Honeybee and Ladybug for Grasshopper.

Student projects: the practical part of the course will be related to the development of a design concept for a building located in different places of the world. Tutors will assist students during all the process that leads from the design concept to the fabrication of a model at small scale, constructed within the laboratories of the Politecnico di Milano.

Risultati di apprendimento attesi

By the end of the course, the lectures and studio activities will allow students to:

  • Learn how to develop a design concept by critical and technical analyses emerged during the conception of the building component/envelope;
  • Know how to connect design concepts with material strategies and architectural technology;
  • Work with computational tools in order to facilitate the link between digital design, daylight and thermal simulations and physical construction;
  • Learn how to present and communicate research findings as part of a group and individually through the public presentation of their projects;
  • Contribute and share knowledge as part of an interdisciplinary professional team.

Argomenti trattati

During the course, the theme of building envelopes will take the shape of a shading device element capable of managing the outdoor environmental conditions as a way to achieve high range of visual and thermal comfort within the analysed spaces. The main focus will be the optimisation of sun control devices by means of daylight strategies, at first, followed by the definition of the total energy implied by the adopted technological solutions. Next to the main core, the course will offer the chance to confront the design choice with a range of strategies and considerations related to the adaptation topic. Students will be shown examples of prototypes and existing adaptive façades that relate with their environment taking advantage from peculiar geometries, actuators and suitable materials. Moreover, the theme of the acceptance and the behaviour of users inside buildings will be thoroughly investigated.

The studio activities will be based on:

  • preliminary analyses of existing adaptive building skins;
  • development of a shading device concept by considering its physical assessment (geometry studies, kinematics involved and material description) and the implication of the investigated device in a particular climate/location;
  • detailed daylight and energy analyses, thus UDI, DA, DGP and KWh/m2y (comparison between the design concept and the base case, the one without shadings, and between the design concept and the case studies analysed preliminarily);
  • technological development of the whole exterior façade (structure, substructure, integration of the shading device, actuators arrangement);
  • fabrication of a small scale prototype capable of showing the shading device concept (geometry proportions, type of actuation, materials combination)


The course deals with visual comfort and energy efficiency trend inside buildings. It is fundamental to have a basic knowledge about daylight parameters - i.e. the difference between luminance and illuminance, SI derived units - and computational tools capable of calculating the amount of daylight in buildings and the related energy balance. A basic knowledge of building technologies and physical construction of mock-ups is also recommended.

Modalità di valutazione

The evaluation of the course will be based on:

  • intermediate group evaluations distributed evenly during the semester (40%);
  • two formal submissions (60%).

EVALUATION 1: Group Work

  • assessment of the report prepared in the exercise;
  • presentation of the project work developed during the course session;
  • questions intended to reveal the student's ability to connect the various topics covered in the programme.

EVALUATION 2: Individual report

  • each member of the group is called to provide an individual report about the research and the results he/she has collected and obtained during the course;
  • the individual evaluation will be based on: (1) attention and presence during the studio activity, (2) contribution to the group project.

Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaJan Wienold, Dynamic daylight glare evaluation, Editore: IBPSA Conference, Anno edizione: 2009
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaAzza Nabil, John Mardaljevic, Useful Daylight Illuminances: A Replacement for Daylight Factors, Editore: Elsevier, Anno edizione: 2006
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaChristoph F. Reinhart, John Mardaljevic, Zack Rogers, Dynamic Daylight Performance Metrics for Sustainable Building Design, Editore: LEUKOS VOL 3 NO 1 JULY 2006 PAGES 7-31
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaKnaack, U., & Klein, The Future Envelope 1: A Multidisciplinary Approach (Vol. 8), Editore: IOS Press, Anno edizione: 2008
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaC. Schittich, Solar Architecture: Strategies, Visions, Concepts, Editore: Birkhauser, Anno edizione: 2003
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaCeccato C., Hesselgren L., Pauly M., Pottmann H., and Wallner J., Advances in Architectural Geometry , Editore: Springer, Anno edizione: 2010, ISBN: 978-3-7091-0308-1
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaMoloney, J, Designing kinetics for architectural facades: state change, Editore: Taylor & Francis, Anno edizione: 2011
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaA. Compagno, Intelligente Glasfassaden / Intelligent Glass Facades, Editore: Birkhauser, Anno edizione: 2002
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaAddington, D. M., & Schodek, D. L., Smart materials and new technologies: for the architecture and design professions, Editore: Routledge, Anno edizione: 2005
Risorsa bibliografica facoltativaLiotta S.J., Belfiore M., Patterns and Layering: Japanese Spatial Culture, Nature and Architecture, Editore: Die Gestalten Verlag, Anno edizione: 2012, ISBN: 978-3-89955-461-8

Forme didattiche
Tipo Forma Didattica Ore di attività svolte in aula
Ore di studio autonome
Laboratorio Informatico
Laboratorio Sperimentale
Laboratorio Di Progetto
Totale 60:00 90:00

Informazioni in lingua inglese a supporto dell'internazionalizzazione
Insegnamento erogato in lingua Inglese
Disponibilità di materiale didattico/slides in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di libri di testo/bibliografia in lingua inglese
Possibilità di sostenere l'esame in lingua inglese
Disponibilità di supporto didattico in lingua inglese
schedaincarico v. 1.6.5 / 1.6.5
Area Servizi ICT