DFAB HOUSE project team celebrates the topping out

Spatial Timber Assemblies modules being mounted on the construction site

Construction of the DFAB HOUSE is moving forward rapidly: last Thursday, the 5th of July, researchers from the NCCR Digital Fabrication and ETH Zurich, the NEST team of Empa and various involved industry partners and construction professionals came together to celebrate the topping out of the unique construction project. The ceremony was held at the NEST building in Dübendorf, a few days after the spatial timber modules had been assembled on-site.

The topping out ceremony is the major milestone in between the construction kick-off and the official opening of a building and a very proud moment for everyone involved. No less than 80 people gathered in Dübendorf to visit the three-story building in its current state and to raise their glasses to the joint achievement.

Project progress is the result of multifaceted collaborations and great enthusiasm
“The DFAB HOUSE has already gained a lot of attention and we are convinced that it will become an international flagship project for digital fabrication in architecture and construction”, stated Enrico Marchesi, NEST Innovation Manager, in his speech. That the construction process has successfully advanced to this state is the result of the dedication and openness to cooperation amongst everyone involved, emphasised Konrad Graser, who is leading the Design and Project Management on behalf of the NCCR Digital Fabrication, in his speech of thanks. “The DFAB HOUSE is the unique result of the collaboration of researchers from various disciplines, the collaboration between academia and industry, and the collaboration between human and machine”, said Graser.

The next innovations await on-site for installation
Now that the main elements of the building’s super structure have all been successfully installed on-site, the next step will be the installation of the lightweight translucent façade system. The innovative façade system combines the excellent thermal insulation and translucency of aerogel granules with the lightness and geometric flexibility of a membrane system. In addition, the 15 bespoke Smart Dynamic Casting façade mullions will be installed on-site. Once these two steps are completed, the focus will shift to interior construction.

Image credits: NCCR Digital Fabrication / Michael Lyrenmann