Kurobane Lecture

Kurobane Lecture Tubular Structures in Architecture
Date / Time 09 December 2019, Monday / 09:20 - 10:05 hrs
Venue Lecture Theatre 6
Speaker Mick Eekhout
Founding Partner, Octatube , Rotterdamseweg 200, The Netherlands.


For structural engineers tubular structures are most interesting for buildings with larger spans. For architects other tendencies in the design of tubular structures of buildings are valid which have an influence on a much smaller scale, more intense, often more complex than just large spans. From the 1970-ies onwards high tech architectural caught much attention. From 1995 onwards, accelerated by the intense use of the computer, attention came also on deviating geometrical forms of buildings, the fluent form buildings and the free form buildings. ‘Fluent’ forms of buildings have geometries which can be derived by mathematical formulas and hence are more or less communicable. Free forms are free forms and literally cannot be generated by mathematical forms. The form of these buildings has to be established by the architect and other parties just have to follow. Yet the future of tubular structures is only colored by these pilot projects. The majority of applications is still quite functional and straight forward.


1950, born The Hague, the Netherlands. Lives and works in Delft. 1973 diploma building technical engineer / architect TH Delft (Cum Laude). 1975 start architect's office Mick Eekhout. 1978 start of Octatube Engineering. 1983 start of Octatube Space Structures / International, specialized in space structures and glass facades and roofs. In 2019 over 100 staff and 50% turnover in export. Worked with Renzo Piano, Frei Otto, Norman Foster, Moshe Safdie, Shigeru Ban, Erick van Egeraat, Benthem + Crouwel, Cepezed.
1986 starts foundation Delft Design, association of Delft designers. 1988 co-foundation of Booosting. 1989 PhD (cum laude) with dissertation ‘Architecture in Space Structures’. 1992 professor Chair of Product Development TU Delft. Between 1995 and 2008 ‘research nestor’ of Building Technology Design. 1996 published ‘Tubular Structures in Architecture’, first edition, translated in 5 languages for Cidect. 1999-2002 department head BTD. 1997-2003 member Council of Professors TU Delft advising rector magnificus. 2000-2007 chair of Research Advisory Board Industrial Design Engineering TU Delft. 2002 was awarded ‘Pioneer Award‘ for Space Structures’ by prof Makowski, University of Surrey. 2003 elected full member Royal Academy Science and Arts/KNAW and Academy for Technology & Innovation. 2005-2008 Special Professor of Space Structures at Nottingham University. 2007-2009 forming a Dutch 3TU research umbrella organisation ‘Spearhead Building Research’ for the building industry. Several awards like the Kho Liang Ie Award for Industrial Design. Wrote 20 books (methodology, product development, tubular steel structures, glass structures, aluminium) and over 400 publications. Published in 2011 ‘Tubular Structures in Architecture’ revisited. Supervised 20 PhD students. Retirement as a professor in 2015. Was created in 2012 ‘Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion’ by HM Queen Beatrix. After 30 years and over 1.000 completed Octatube projects as main designer and CEO of Octatube his son Nils-Jan Eekhout took over Octatube leadership in 2015. 2017-2018 chair of Economic Platform Delft. In 2017 Queen Maxima visited the Octatube factory. m.eekhout@octatube.nl / a.c.j.m.eekhout@tudelft.nl / www.mickeekhout.nl / www.octatube.nl

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