The Endesa Pavilion, in Barcelona, is an experimental project from the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia which explores how technology can create architectures that are adaptive to particular environments, and particular conditions.
The building starts with a simple premiss of a timber box with a grid façade on which modular components can be mounted. From an analysis of the building orientation and latitude, maps of insolation density can be created which allows façade components to be generated whose forms respond to the precise conditions expected at that point on the building. Moving across the façade each component will be different as its form is optimised to best meet the parameters to which it must respond. In this case that means providing shade and generating electricity from PV cells.
The complexity and variety of components generated is not an issue in terms of manufacture or assembly. Each component is CNC cut according to the shape sent to it from the CAD file meaning that infinite variety is possible at virtually no additional cost. Assembly issues are also resolved within the software so that when the components come to site they are pre-drilled and slotted and can be assembled like flat pack furniture. On this building it meant the whole thing could be assembled in a month.