Incorporating biomimicry principles into building envelopes: An overview on developed examples

Moghaddam M. F., ELİAS ÖZKAN S. T.

33rd International on Passive and Low Energy Architecture Conference: Design to Thrive, PLEA 2017, Edinburgh, United Kingdom, 2 - 05 July 2017, vol.2, pp.2610-2617 identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Volume: 2
  • City: Edinburgh
  • Country: United Kingdom
  • Page Numbers: pp.2610-2617
  • Keywords: Adaptive envelopes, Biomimetic architecture, Biomimicry, Nature inspired design
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Copyright © NCEUB 2017.One of the key considerations in designing energy-efficient buildings is their envelope; since it is the interface between external environmental factors and internal requirements of the occupants. If the envelope is considered as a medium rather than as a barrier, it can be equated to the skin of a living organism, which offers efficient solutions to design challenges related to the regulation of light, moisture, air and heat.. An investigation into strategies found in nature can provide designers with innovative solutions for building envelopes and biomimicry principles can be adopted to provide sustainable solutions to human challenges, by emulating nature's time-tested patterns and strategies. Despite the high potential biomimicry holds for sustainability, only a few examples exist in the context of the built environment. This paper presents a review of developed examples from around the world and identifies parallels between the challenges faced in the design of the building envelope and the strategies that plants and animals possess to cope with their environment. To this end, the solutions were classified according to the building types, the climatic conditions they are located in, design challenges, and strategies developed by the designers to solve them.