Super Compaction and Pluripotent Shape Transformation via Algorithmic Stacking for 3D Deployable Structures

Zhonghua Xi, Yu-Ki Lee, Young-Joo Lee, Yun-hyeong Kim, Huangxin Wang, Yue Hao, Young-Chang Joo, In-Suk Choi, Jyh-Ming Lien

Origami structures enabled by folding and unfolding can create complex 3D shapes. However, even a small 3D shape can have large 2D unfoldings. The huge initial dimension of the 2D flattened structure makes fabrication difficult, and defeats the main purpose, namely compactness, of many origami-inspired engineering. In this work, we propose a novel algorithmic kirigami method that provides super compaction of an arbitrary 3D shape with non-negligible surface thickness called "algorithmic stacking". Our approach computationally finds a way of cutting the thick surface of the shape into a strip. This strip forms a Hamiltonian cycle that covers the entire surface and can realize transformation between two target shapes: from a super compact stacked shape to the input 3D shape. Depending on the surface thickness, the stacked structure takes merely 0.001% to 6% of the original volume. This super compacted structure not only can be manufactured in a workspace that is significantly smaller than the provided 3D shape, but also makes packing and transportation easier for a deployable application. We further demonstrate that, the proposed stackable structure also provides high pluripotency and can transform into multiple 3D target shapes if these 3D shapes can be dissected in specific ways and form a common stacked structure. In contrast to many designs of origami structure that usually target at a particular shape, our results provide a universal platform for pluripotent 3D transformable structures.

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