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Catenary Ceramics is a ceramic collection inspired by the catenary curves.
The features of catenary curves contribute to the benefits of reducing the constructional material, strengthening the structure, and rendering its unique forms and functionality.

Dimension / 6"*6"*6"~12"
Designer / Jia-Sheng Chen
Year / 2021

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Catenary Curves

A catenary curve is self-supporting, stabilized by the force of gravity acting on its weight to hold them in compression. This makes them very stable and efficient, capable of larger spans and supporting greater loads than horizontal beams. Catenary arches are often used in the construction of kilns. To create the desired curve, the shape of a hanging chain of the desired dimensions is transferred to a form which is then used as a guide for the placement of bricks or other building material.

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Built of "unburnt mud or clay, with the floor slightly raised above the soil outside, spotlessly clean, with a recess for cooking and attractive decorations in a bright tinsel paper on the walls. Though only a few yards in diameter, its high conical roof gave it a sense of space". Naturally built homes like these have been lived in comfortably for thousands of years.

Beehive homes

Harran, Turkey

Built of mud by the ethnic Musgum people in the Far North Province in Cameroon. The dwellings were built in a variety of geometric shapes. Constructed of mud, thatch, and water by local residents using few tools. They are adobe structures, a variant of cob, and are in the catenary arch form, which can bear maximum weight with the minimum use of building materials. It is an important architectural style of Cameroon.

Musgum mud huts

Camernoon, Central Africa

The feature of catenary curves allows a structure to support itself with fewer supports, which often appears on the larger scale of 3D printing houses. It renders a future trend of 3D printing architecture, facilitating the environment by lower the amount of building material. A single material can construct the whole building structure, fasten the construction speed, and reduce material utilization. Furthermore, a building without internal columns and supports increases the usability of the inner space.

Contemporary Application
of Catenary curve

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