A rendering of the Elytra Filament Pavilion at the Victoria and Albert Museum John Madejski Garden, in London.
ICD/ITKE University of Stuttgart A rendering of the Elytra Filament Pavilion at the Victoria and Albert Museum John Madejski Garden, in London.

Beginning in May, the John Madejski Garden at the Victoria and Albert Museum, in London, will bear witness to a new kind of nature: bio-inspired robotic fabrication. Designed by a team of engineers from the University of Stuttgart, in Germany, led by experimental architect Achim Menges and structural engineer Jan Knippers, the “Elytra Filament Pavilion” will explore how emerging robotic technologies are impacting architectural design, engineering, and making. Modeled after the wing-and-shell combination of flying beetles, known as elytra, the ethereal pavilion will comprise an undulating canopy of tightly woven carbon-fiber shells. Sensors embedded in the fibers will collect data on structural behavior and occupancy patterns, giving the designers information on how the pavilion could be expanded to continue to meet the needs of the space. Visitors will then be able to watch a robotic arm fabricate additions to the pavilion on-site. The pavilion is a part of the museum’s first-ever “Engineering Season” series of displays, events, and digital initiatives highlighting global engineering design, which opens this spring and closes in November. It also includes a retrospective of the life, work, and legacy of Arup Engineering founder Ove Arup, as well as a look at the latest, cutting-edge engineering projects from around the world. [Victoria and Albert Museum]

ICYMI: NBBJ’s open-source Grasshopper plugin brings computational design to non-programmers. [ARCHITECT]

Could incandescent light bulbs, or lamps, be modified to maintain their dimming ability and soft glow while performing more efficiently than CFLs and LEDs? A team of researchers at MIT thinks so. [The Economist]

The latest BIM, augmented reality, and building-management tools for small-scale projects. [Engineering.com]

Les Angles (left) is an eight-part, wool-upholstered contract seating system from French interiors brand Smarin that absorbs noise and can be readily re-configured. [Designboom]

Questions remain as to whether the city of Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia, will be able to construct and fill the mixed-use development planned for construction around the base of—and deemed necessary to economically support—the forthcoming Kingdom Tower as slipping oil prices hamper the country's economy. [The Wall Street Journal]

#longread: Stadium architects and designers are increasingly using technology to augment the attendee experience and "compete with the couch." Between commercial-watching apps and ultra-fast WiFi, this weekend’s Superbowl game at Levi Stadium, in Santa Clara, Calif., will be no exception. But it wasn't always that way. [Curbed]

A Southern California utility that owns the natural gas storage facility that has been leaking noxious gases and sickening locals is facing criminal charges in Los Angeles County. [Vox]