RCD recently teamed up with some of our tall building specialists for a two-day hack on high rise digitalisation. The result was a new parametric tool for the exploration of tall buildings. The tool draws on the framework of our Dynamic Masterplanning toolkit to enable the rapid generation and evaluation of tower design options to a number of engineering criteria. We can adjust a variety of different control parameters and see in real-time the impacts of those changes on the key performance indicators of the building. This gives us the power to rapidly explore design options live with the client and other members of the design team.
What makes this tool unique is not the geometry generation (which is relatively straightforward) but the amount of embedded engineering expertise which allows the tool to produce results with the benefit of expert judgement. What makes it useful is that while the relationships between some inputs and outputs can be intuited, others are difficult to predict without calculation. For example, different combinations of parameters will require different numbers and sizes of lifts, which then has major knock-on effects on the size and shape of the core, which in turn affects available floor area and structural stiffness (which may the necessitate further changes). Calculating all of this by hand could take a long time and would typically involve several different specialists. By automating the process adjustments and iteration can be performed near-instantly with data on the potential impacts of design decisions available immediately. This allows for the various considerations of tall building design to be easily understood and balanced to enable a holistic approach to finding the optimal design solution.