ESR: James Solly
INDUSTRIAL PARTNERS: S-Form + Foster + Partners



Digital fabrication technologies offer the possibility to widen the range of processes available through standardised fabrication and bypass the limitations on fabrication of bespoke forms. Often accompanied by trial-and-error approaches, the limits of digital fabrication methods are quickly reached without a thorough understanding of the strength and limits of the forming processes and the materials.

Virtual prototyping replaces material/physical prototyping by simulating the fabrication processes: the machining, material interaction and forming stages to test and evaluate system performance. It is the proposal of this project to apply a virtual prototyping methodology to the FRP fabrication method “Coreless Fibre Winding”, that has been under development at the ITKE and ICD at the University of Stuttgart since 2012.

This process involves the winding of Carbon and Glass-Fibre around minimal structural frameworks utilising robotic placement methods. The resulting, programmed, fibre-fibre interaction between these frames can be used to generate complex geometries.

James Solly

james solly


James Solly is a Research Associate and tutor at the Institute of Building Structures and Structural Design (itke) ( at the University of Stuttgart.
He completed a Master’s in Engineering Science at the University of Oxford in 2008 before working with Ramboll UK and BuroHappold Engineering until 2015 on the design and realisation of computationally or geometrically complex… read more



Elytra Filament Pavilion – Robotic Filament Winding for Structural Composite Building Systems

Author: James Solly

Fabricate 2017 Paper on the Elytra Pavilion Innochain ESR James Solly (ESR08), working on the research topic Virtual Prototyping FRP, presented at the Fabricate 2017 conference in Stuttgart, Germany in April 2017 alongside co-authors Marshall Prado and Moritz Doerstelmann of the ICD. Their conference paper can be found in the full proceedings (page 224), which... read more

Keywords: · CFRP · Coreless Filament Winding · GFRP · itke

ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2016/2017

Author: James Solly

ESR08 – Virtual Prototyping FRP ESR12 – Material Gradient FRP AUTHORS: James Solly and Saman Saffarian Lightweight, Long-Span Fibrous Construction Since October 2015 Sam and James have been working on the ICD/ITKE Research Pavilion 2016/2017 that was developed within the ITECH Master Studio. The recently-unveiled Pavilion was created to test alternative scenarios for architectural application... read more

Keywords: · CFRP · ESR08 · ESR12 · fabrication · GFRP · itke · lightweight

The Elytra Filament Pavilion at the Vitra Campus

Author: James Solly

Relocating a Modular Fibrous Pavilion Following it’s highly successful premiere at the V&A Museum in London, the Elytra Filament Pavilion was demounted, transported to southern Germany and reinstalled at the Vitra Campus in Weil am Rhein. The Vitra Campus is a field of experimentation for architecture and design and world renowned for its exquisite accumulation... read more

Keywords: · CFRP · ESR08 · GFRP · itke · robots in architecture