By Francesco Terzago On Monday, November 20 th, 2017 · no Comments · In

HyparVault is an experimental vaulted stone structure fabricated with near zero waste of material. This is possible using a new type of block, based on a known ruled surface, the hyperbolic paraboloid, fabricated by means of wire cutting technology using a robotic arm. The structure, designed by architects of New Fundamentals Research Group, is an unique barrel built using just two types of stone blocks, which are the mirror images of each other. The blocks have trapezoidal forms and they are axially perforated to allow the passage of the stainless steel cables inside.

Volta SNBR

The vault produced by the robot (metodo additivo) e con tecniche di stampa 3D (metodo additivo).


The prestressing of the structure occurs due to post-tensioning of steel cables which are fixed to the base of the barrel vault. The first full scale prototype has been recently built at S.N.B.R., a French company specialized in cutting-edge stone construction using the state of the art technologies in this field. This prototype is the last of a great number of experimental experiences carried out between the research group and the company.

Lo stesso robot cambia la testa in modo automatico: filo diamantato ed elettromadrino.

The same robot is able to cut with the diamond wire saw and use an electric-spindle, thanks to the interchangeable end-effect.


The researchers are working on using the same hypar block obtained by means of additive manufacturing processes: made of recomposed stone using waste limestone generated during other processing stages, using the mould and counter-mould technique; fabricated by 3D printing, once again using wasted stone and cement.

The main intent of the research is to establish an innovative connection between shape, structure and fabrication, coding the characteristics of shapes based on the hypar blocks, generating a series of new self-supported vaulted morphologies through integrated parametric analyses.



Photo credit: Giuseppe Fallacara e Maurizio Barberio