[Univ of Cambridge] [Dept of Engineering]

Foldable Cylinders


Foldable Cylinders have been developed by Simon Guest and Sergio Pellegrino. Foldable Cylinders are a new way of packaging a cylinder. They consist of a number of triangular panels arranged in a helical pattern on a cylinder; when folded the cylinders are packaged as a compact stack of plates.

Three simple designs are shown below. These cylinders all fold down to the flat polygons shown underneath each cylinder. However, the concept is much more general than these simple cylinders show. There is a very wide range of possible designs, which have different folding properties.

cylinders

We have explored geometrically the range of possible foldable cylinders, and have looked at their folding properties both numerically and experimentally. We have examined a number of different possible ways of making the cylinders, and have looked at many possible applications. new.gif A simple set of instructions for making your own foldable cylinder can be found here.

Relevant Publications

Guest, S.D., and Pellegrino, S. (1996). "The Folding of Triangulated Cylinders, Part III: Experiments." ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics, 63, 77-83.

Guest, S.D., and Pellegrino, S. (1994). "The Folding of Triangulated Cylinders, Part II: The Folding Process." ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics, 61, 777-783.

Guest, S.D., and Pellegrino, S. (1994). "The Folding of Triangulated Cylinders, Part I: Geometric Considerations." ASME Journal of Applied Mechanics, 61, 773-777.


Last updated on the 15th of December, 2003

S.D. Guest - sdg@eng.cam.ac.uk