Membrane structure is a new type of large-span spatial structure developed in recent decades. It is made of fabric (membrane) with excellent properties through support members (such as rigid beams, columns, flexible cables), or air added to the membrane. The pressure combines in a certain manner and applies an appropriate initial pre-tension to form a spatial structural shape with a certain stiffness, thereby bearing a spatial structural form of a certain external load. Its history can be traced back to ancient people who used the fibers of the trees and the tents built by the hides.
The membrane structure is a brand-new architectural structure that integrates architecture, structural mechanics, fine chemicals and materials science, computer technology, etc., and has a high technical content. The curved surface can be arbitrarily changed according to the designer's design needs, combined with the overall environment, to create a landmark image project. Under the sunlight, the interior of the building covered by the membrane is filled with natural diffused light, and there is no contrast between the glossy surface and the shadow. The indoor visual environment is open and harmonious. At night, the lights in the building illuminate the night sky through the film of the roof, and the shape of the building shows a dreamlike effect.
Its function is equivalent to concrete, steel and other materials in the traditional rigid structure. Early membrane structures have been stagnant due to the slow development of membranes. Until modern times, due to the development of science and technology, the emergence of new materials, especially after the 1970s, DuPont developed a glass fiber fabric with PTFE coating (PTEF) as a film. Membrane structure has grown by leaps and bounds in recent decades. In 1970, the Osaka International Exposition in Japan, designed by American engineers David Geiger and H. Berger, adopted the air-bearing membrane structure. The first glass fiber fabric coated with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) was used as the covering material. A large-span membrane structure in the modern sense.
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