Vision to Reality — the Materialization of the Emirates Air-Line (London Cable Car)
This paper presents the detail design and fabrication process of the complex double curved structural steelwork for the 3 main Towers and the 2 compression towers of the Emirates Air-Line. The main towers consist of 2 spiraling and interlocking “helices” and 4 twisting” ribbon” plates. Rather than a more conventional approach of rationalizing the double curved steelwork into single curved segments, we employed a 3d steel forming technique typically used for shipbuilding which enabled us to archive the original reference design. To facilitate fabrication and pre-fabrication our highly detailed and parametric 3D model was used directly to develop the steelwork fabrication information and to cut and form the structural steel members themselves.
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