‘Luftschloss’ – (English translation: a castle in the sky) is a German term commonly used since the 16th century describing the creation of a fantasy, a chimera or simply the act of daydreaming. A ‘Luftschloss’ is a conceptual idea or desire almost impossible to achieve.
With new developments in the aviation industry pushing technologies towards autonomous and stable flight, we now have the unique opportunity to rethink the relationship of architectural structures entering the sky.  This seminar revisits the fantasy of Luftschloss by questioning the role of aviated, hovering or floating architecture typologies.
Quadcopters (known as drones) are multi-rotor helicopters with the capability of moving both vertically and horizontally, but most importantly, maintain a localized position in space. These drone devices are also able to follow scripted control paths and correspond to synchronized flying movements. Off-the-shelf drones can also carry a limited amount of weight depending on their size, span, and battery capacity.
Participants in this seminar will utilize the drone technology as a ‘chassis’ for architectural design, by analyzing basic parameters of drones such as aerodynamics principles, weight limitations and airflow requirements. Based on this preliminary analysis, participants will also research lightweight materials, design geometrical structures and produce aerodynamic envelopes for each drone. This design, research and fabrication seminar combines light weight flying structures and aerodynamic envelopes with the performance of synchronized flight paths and large volumetric floating architecture.