Robotic Cloud was a proposal submitted to the Sunbrella: The Future of Shade 2016 competition. It utilizes the Sunbrella fabric as an inflatable dynamic mobile shading device capable of shading one individual or large groups of people across the Miami Design District. By using drones, Robotic Cloud allows for dynamic and responsive shading for specific site conditions determined by current weather conditions, the number of visitors, and the visitor's desire. The proposal consists of two parts: the drones, and the docking towers described below.
Robotic Cloud was recognized for Honorable Mention in the Laka Reacts Competition 2017.
My involvement with this project was at RAD-UM (rad-um.com) in which I was one of the Lead Designers while overseeing the production of drawings and presentation material.
The drones are automated quadcopters that carry helium inflated hexagons. These hexagon inflatables use Sunbrella marine fabrics that are engineered to withstand sun, wind, and rain. In order to make the fabric airtight, the Sunbrella fabric will be coated on the inside with liquid latex. It should be noted that the as part of the Future of Shade 2016 competition, the use of Sunbrella fabric was a requirement.
The Drones are automated using an algorithm determined by the current weather conditions, swarming algorithms, and the visitors desire. As a result, the Drones can be configured in a variety of ways from flocking together and casting large shaded areas like an overcast, to hovering individually so it can be used as a personal shading device.
the docking towers
The docking towers are independent columns installed throughout the Miami Design District that store and charge the Drones. Each Docking Tower is outfitted with a micro wind turbine at the top to charge the Drones using wind power. The power is delivered to each Drone by cathode and anode rods placed on each side of the column.
A rendering of the Robotic Cloud at night. At night, Robotic Cloud provides a source of light for visitors.