Funicular Floor Design

Ranaudo F.

This dissertation investigates the design of funicular floors, with attention to their role in the building system, compliance with structural building codes and construction requirements. It derives its motivation from the need to develop more sustainable structural solutions to decrease the environmental impact of the construction industry, and aims to provide a valid alternative to traditional floor systems. The objectives of this research are to define methods and tools for the design of funicular floors, to scale this system to real building applications, and to explore its potential impact in the construction industry. This is achieved through the extensions of currently available form finding methods and analysis tools as well as the design and fabrication of real scale demonstrators. The first part of this dissertation introduces the funicular floor system, highlighting its benefits and limitations, and defines the open questions that prevent it from being a viable alternative to well-established slab systems. Part II systematically addresses the design of a funicular floor. It provides methods and procedures for addressing functional issues beyond the structural support of the building occupancy, such as fire, vibrations, acoustics, redundancy, ductility and diaphragm action. Finally, Part III presents several full-scale funicular floor applications and analyses how this technology could potentially impact the construction industry.


    author      = "Ranaudo, F.",
    title       = "Funicular Floor Design",
    institution = "ETH Zurich",
    year        = "2023",
    address     = "",
    month       = "",
    doi         = "",
    note        = "",

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