Revisiting Stewart–Gough platform applications: A kinematic pavilion

Athanasios Markou*, Serenay Elmas, Günther H. Filz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
31 Downloads (Pure)


Stewart–Gough platforms are well known for their extraordinary kinematic motion and therefore they are widely used as devices, ranging from flight simulators to microsurgical manipulators. However, they have not yet been explored much as architectural objects and transformable spaces with regards to irregular arrangements of legs and their associate structural performance. In the current study, an innovative architectural and structural application of the Stewart–Gough platform, implemented as full-scale kinematic pavilion, namely the Zero Gravity pavilion, at Aalto University, Finland, is presented. During the design process a Stewart–Gough 3–3 configuration was rearranged to an irregular 6–6 configuration. The architectural freedom in the arrangement of columns was guided by its immanent effect on the structure’s motion, stability, and strength. We opted for one telescopic leg only and its selection is based on four main criteria. Firstly, for each telescopic leg the stability of the different configurations is investigated. Secondly, the self-collision of leg–leg, leg–roof, and roof–floor was investigated by means of physical and computational models as well as through the full-scale pavilion. Thirdly, the selection process is influenced by the force distribution on the six legs. Fourthly, the path trajectory of the kinematic structure is examined in terms of magnitude and type of motion as an architectural feature. The final choice of the telescopic leg was based on the conclusions drawn from the parametric architectural and structural studies. The overall spatial and structural qualities of the system was validated by the full-scale Zero Gravity pavilion.
Original languageEnglish
Article number113304
Number of pages18
JournalEngineering Structures
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Stewart–Gough platform
  • Transformable architecture
  • Structural design
  • Stability
  • Kinematic structure


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