A foldable umbrella structure - Developments and experiences

Stefan Jaksch, Vinzenz Sedlak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Folded surface structures (FSS) offer a fascinating variety of structural and formal choices which are characterized by efficient use of lightweight materials such as thin flat cardboard, plywood, plastic sheet, or sheet metal for load bearing structures. FSS are particularly suitable for intelligent low-cost buildings - such uses include exhibitions, major events, as well as emergency operations. The properties of foldable umbrella shapes have been examined at the Department for Structural Design and Timber Engineering, Vienna University of Technology (VUT) within the context of a special seminar-workshop with architecture students.This article highlights the determination of shape-geometry and their special characteristics when used in an constructional context (material thickness, joints and bracing). Design and construction of a foldable umbrella prototype-model structure within an educational context demonstrates a practical application. Findings of this work can also be assigned to other shapes of antiprismatic folded surface structures (6-fold pattern).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Space Structures
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2011


  • antiprismatic shapes
  • foldable umbrella
  • Folded surface
  • lightweight materials
  • prototype


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