Page path:

Reciprocal Shell 2022

Research Project + International Design & Build Workshop between Chalmers University of Technology and Augsburg University of Applied Sciences

Architecture Energy Efficient Planning and Building – E2D

Course of studies

Energy Efficient Planning and Building (BEng)
Architecture (BA)

Project description

The Reciprocal shell was designed and built by a team of researchers and students from
Chalmers University of Technology and Augsburg University of Applied Sciences. The
demonstrator is a lightweight freeform structure, optimized for fabrication and assembly.

Involved persons

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christopher Robeller


The production process is completely carried out with only a saw blade, which allows for
very fast and precise cuts. The primary topology of the shell are planar polygonal facets
where always 3 edges are joined, therefore a constant distance offset for the thickness of
the shell is possible. Within these polygonal segments, cross bracing is achieved through a
reciprocal configuration of wood beams. Due to the freeform geometry of structurally
optimal shell shapes, diagonals within the polygons cannot directly connect corners.


Joining the cross-bracing elements in the center of the polygons with a reciprocal node allows for
stronger joints compared to connecting 5,6 or 7 beams in a single point. This allows for
strong nodes throughout the structure, without the use of metal plates or brackets. Also,
the fabrication process creates only a minimal amount of offcuts and allows for the use of
simple and cost efficient, short solid wood pieces. It is ideal for hardwood uses. After the
design and build workshop, the structure will be load tested and then completed with a
transparent roof cover. Finally, it will be exhibited as part of the 300year anniversary festival
of the city of Gothenburg.


The research was supported by Chalmers University of Technology and by the FNR research
project No. 2220HV001X / .TSI - Development of an interface for the automated structural
calculation of novel, digitally prefabricated wooden structures with wood-wood

Project Credits:
Chalmers University + Augsburg University of Applied Sciences
Amin Adelzadeh, Dr. Hamed Karimian, Karl Åhlund, Jonas Lundberg, Prof. Dr. Christopher
Robeller (Chalmers Jubilee visiting Professor 2022)
Agathe Ducos, Adrien von der Weid, Alexandra von Bartschikowski, Anne Wicklein, Clément
Braekevelt, Edith Tamm, Edona, Ege Can Yazici, Erika Perleroth, Felicia Raunås, Felix
Bossenmaier, Herman Ehrnberg, Jael Kahlenberg Caso, Jakub Maliborski, Katharina Harre,
Lina Svantesson, Linn Appelgren, Lluc Chia Colomer, Lorenzo Mulatero, Lukasz Gnatek,
Madalin Manu, Maija Virkki, Mauritz Renz, Natasha Zwarts, Nina Tran, Nora Reis, Parjaree
Manuch, Rick Persson, Rikard Murgård, Sakurako Matsuoka, Samira Sarreshtedari, Sara,
Murphy Colome, Selina Ahrens, Selina Christ, Simon Ciompi, Simon Wikström, Sofia
Deixelberger, Theresa Haase, William Havner, Ziming Wang
Special thanks to Chalmers University for the support of the project and to their workshop
staff Tabita Nilsson, Peter Lindblom and Peter Bäckström