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Three Storey Diagrid Design – Scion Innovation Hub

18 January 2021

Scion is a NZ Crown research institute that specialises in research, science and technology development for the forest, wood and wood-derived materials and other biomaterial sectors.

TimberLab was involved early in the design phase of this iconic project under an ECI (Early Contractor Involvement) agreement to assist the design team with DfMA (Design for Manufacture and Assembly) principles. The ECI agreement also allowed TimberLab to commit to production and allocate appropriate manufacture space.

Our experience in complex and bespoke manufacturing was instrumental in helping to resolve and refine the structural timber system. We worked with the project team to create the design concept, then to develop and test the components and systems used in this project.

Early collaboration meant we were able to explore options at concept phase, which in turn ensured the final design was efficient to manufacture, both in time and cost and was suitable for rapid site assembly.

Modern Manufacturing

TimberLab’s skills in digital manufacturing made us the ideal supply partner for this project. Our draughting team completed an accurate 3D model of over 5,000 parts that made up the LVL diagrid, LVL floor and roof framing, Glulam entry beams and custom metalwork connections.

The LVL diagrid alone required the rapid CNC processing of 4,248 parts of LVL to enable us to laminate the 88 finished diamond and triangle-shaped frames. TimberLab’s expertise in CAM + CNC processing, backed up with our modern manufacturing equipment allowed us to utilise multiple CNC machines in tandem to complete this process with consistency and speed.

Product Development

TimberLab worked with Dunning Thornton and Scion to manufacture test joints. This allowed for proof testing of the diagrid nodes prior to finalising the design.

With no precedence in NZ, such an ambitious design meant that developing the diagrid node connections and understanding their ability to withstand the load demands was critical to a successful outcome.

CREDITS: Scion Research 
Project Manager / QS: RDT Pacific / Architect: RTA Studio + Irving Smith Architects / Engineer: Dunning Thornton Consultants

Source: Treetop Solutions News

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