Fabric Meets Cable

by Rita Robison, Assoc. Ed.; Civil Engineering, New York, NY 10017,


Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1989, Vol. 59, Issue 2, Pg. 56-59


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: The newest generation of fabric-roofed stadiums are cable domes designed by David H. Geiger of Geiger Gossen Hamilton Liao Engineers, New York City. He also uses the term tensegrity coined by R. Buckminster Fuller but has eliminated Fuller's triangulation of a continuous tension structure. A net of cables (rather than air or arches) supports the fabric roof; the continuous tension cables and discontinuous compression posts behave like a series of paired cantilever trusses that don't quite touch at the center. From a central tension ring, loads are carried through ridge cables, tension hoops and intermediate diagonals to the perimeter compression ring. Dome size dictates the number of tension hoops. The four cable domes constructed to date are the Gymnastic and Fencing arenas built in Soul for the 1988 Summer Olympics, the Illinois State University Redbird Arena in Bloomington-Normal, and the Suncoast Dome in St. Petersburg, Fla. (to be completed Fall 1989). The two U.S. arenas are described.

Subject Headings: Cables | Domes (structural element) | Fabrics | Tension structures

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