Robotic Greenhouse

Ithaca, New York

Program: Greenhouse Prototype

Height: 1.5M

Year: 2016

Project in collaboration with Binsi Li.  Technical assistance by Leo Liu.

Humanity currently stands at a critical point in its evolution- one
which will revolutionize the interface between technology and
biology. The program of the greenhouse bio-dome is critical in
reevaluating humanity’s relationship with nature- as well as the
role humanity will have in a future where human life is seamlessly
integrated with code and robotics. Situated within a complex
natural cycle of birth and decay, The bio-dome derives both
its structural organization and material logic from biological
processes. Organizational densities of Keratin cells inside the
Toucan beak are reinterpreted for material deposit toolpaths for
the structural formwork. Chitin rich shells of dead shrimp are
manufactured into Chitosan and layered with sodium alginate for
a non-toxic building material that aims to minimize environmental

Extending the creative capabilities of the architect, the design
process co-evolves with the development of materials, tools of
fabrication, and computer code directing robotic behavior. A
dialogue between Robotic and Biological intelligence is expressed
spatially in the structure, recording history of material deposits,
erosions and deformations. Complementing the natural material
formations, robotic fabrication actively modifies the structure
through deposits and removals of material. Processing data
acquired from soil sensors to satellites ideal growth circumstances
are determined per specific plant and area. Robotic capabilities

deployed to micromanage the structure constantly respond to
material constancy and content, structural distortion, deformation,
soil, light and atmospheric conditions.
The responsiveness and dynamic control offered through robotic
fabrication allows for a synchronous management of a network of
animated microenvironments on a planetary scale. Alongside the
plants, these environments have the potential to be inhabited by
humans, ultimately enriching the connection between people and
the vital food they consume.

Final boards 4.jpg
Final boards 5.jpg
Final boards 7.jpg