Tensegrity Systems : from the simplex to the foldable tensegrity ring
Abstract The coupling between form and forces, their structural morphology, is a key point for Tensegrity systems. In the first part of this paper we describe the design process of the simplest tensegrity system which was achieved by Kenneth Snelson. Some other simple cells are presented and tensypolyhedra are defined as tensegrity systems which meet polyhedral geometry in a stable equilibrium state. A numerical model giving access to more complex systems, in terms of number of components and geometrical properties, is then evoked. The third part is devoted to linear assemblies of annular cells which can be folded. Some experimental models of the Tensegrity ring which is the basic component of this “hollow rope” have been realized and are examined.