Spatial Flux: body and architecture in space

soft robotics / material design / wearable

Spatial Flux is a seamless pneumatic surface that morphs to embrace the human body in zero gravity.

Structurally, zero gravity means that we do not have to contend with architecture's greatest arch-nemesis, gravity. This opens up a new world of possibilities where we can deploy structures that no longer have to counteract/resist gravitational force. We would like to explore new forms of rapid inflatable prototyping for zero gravity.

Space is precious in confined quarters, whether in outer space or in a dense urban area. The creation of temporal architecture is fundamental to the design of tomorrow's city. Zero gravity (space) could be a fundamental stepping stone in the way we approach design, as it forces us to critique architectural language itself. A surface in flux with temporal possibilities. Without gravity to dictate our relationship with surface we have the opportunity to re-consider these relationships.

How do we define surface architecturally when our current gravity-based vocabulary was not born of zero gravity and will not suffice? What opportunities can this state of flux provide for architects when designing for the body? Architects are married to an XY (North South) cartesian grid, with Z (gravity) being the main point of reference for many architectural elements. We would like to force ourselves to imagine these elements without an XYZ reference, re-thinking our descriptions of them.

Team: Carson Smuts - MIT Media Lab City Science Group


Pneumatic Unit System


Full Assembly Diagrams

MiniFlux23 [Converted]-02 copy.jpg
PlanView.jpg.1400x1400 copy.jpg
SpatialFlux_ Soft Robotic surface in zero-g 3.gif

For more information, please visit the City Science Group Project Page and the MIT Media Lab post on the Zero G Flight.