Robotically assembled wall for Critical Digital, Harvard Design School

wall for Critical Digital Conference, Harvard GSD wall for Critical Digital Conference, Harvard GSD

During spring break I was asked to help with a project thought up by Harvard GSD Professor Ingeborg Rocker and her 1st year students.  One of the 1st studio projects involved developing an aggregation, they wanted to take one of their aggregations and build it full scale using the 6-axis ABB Robot the school recently purchased.  I had already been fairly successful in developing some code for the robot for an assignment for Martin Bechtold’s Construction Automation class, so I was pretty excited to give a full scale project a go.

The finished piece is two 7 foot high walls, 20 feet long with a central room/space in between.  Jesse and I developed the software that allowed this to happen.  We created a Rhinoscript that generates the RAPID code needed to run the machine directly from Rhino geometry.  RAPID code describes the position and orientation of a series of targets and the path the robot must take between the targets as well as the configuration of the robots joints at each position and when to open and close the gripper, etc.

The whole project took the cooperation of many people.  All of the bricks were cut from 2×4’s and sanded down.  The wall was divided into segments that could be constructed by the robot and brought up from the basement into the Pit/lobby space where they were assembled.  The whole thing is held together with wood glue and screws were used to hold the robot assembled chunks together.

I spent a lot of time coordinating day to day with the leading team (Jeff, Misa, Ben, and Teresa) and it was a lot of fun, congrats guys!

Project Credits:

Ingeborg Rocker (

Leading Team:
Jeff LaBoskey, Misato Odanaka, Benjamin Franceschi, Teresa McWalters

Jessica Rosenkrantz, Jesse Louis-Rosenberg, Christian J. Lange, Rocker-Lange Architects

Core Team:
Matthew Swaidan, Tory Wolcott, Ricardo Munoz, Natalya Egon

Elizabeth Farley, Carl Koepcke, Jeongyon Kim, Eva Leung, Masana Amamiya, Matthew Fiely, Tessa Kelly, Alicia Taylor, Cara Liberatore, Lindsay Chandler-Alexander, Julian Bushman-Copp, Jessica Knobloch, Yuhka Miura, Ben Brady, Sen Ando, Theodore Diehl, Chelsea Garunay, Ka Yip, Lesley McTague, Jessica Vaughn, Jason Phipps, Paul Merrill, Annie Kountz, Jeremy Jih, Brian Militana, Brad Crane, Matt Waxman

Special Thanks:
Stephen Hickey, Martin Bechthold

Junior Faculty Grand, and Preston Scott Cohen

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  1. kirsten

    this is so cool. thank you for sharing.

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