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IASS 2016 Tokyo Symposium: Spatial Structures in the 21st Century


IASS Symposium 2016

SESSION: Historical Structures

"The Key to the Problem is the Section:" Pier Luigi Nervi's Proposed Copertura for Reynolds Aluminum

< Table of Contents for Historical Structures
  • Proceedings Name: IASS 2016 Tokyo Symposium: Spatial Structures in the 21st Century
  • ISSN: (Electronic Version) 2518-6582
  • Session: Historical Structures
  • Pages: 9
  • Title: "The Key to the Problem is the Section:" Pier Luigi Nervi's Proposed Copertura for Reynolds Aluminum
  • Author(s): Thomas Leslie, Benjamin Kruse, Kyle Vansice
  • Keywords: aluminum, arched structure, history of structures, thermal expansion, deflection
Abstract
In 1960, Pier Luigi Nervi was approached by the Reynolds Aluminium Company to re-imagine a defunct project for an indoor stadium in New York City. Reynolds had been interested in the publicity from the original project, and they sought Nervi's help in re-designing it as a demonstration project. Reynolds・engineers met with Nervi to develop a scheme for 100,000 spectators that, had it been built, would have been the largest aluminium structure ever. Its 1200 foot span would have been the largest indoor space in the world. Nervi re-imagined the processes his firm had used to build other large span roofs in his trademark ferrocemento. But with aluminium Nervi faced new problems of deflection, creep, and connectivity. Using digital reconstructions this paper examines whether the Reynolds project could have been built, and how it would have performed structurally, using unpublished drawings and correspondence in the Nervi archives.

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