Despite recent advancements in digital fabrication and manufacturing, limitations associated with computational tools are preventing further progress in the design of non-standard architectures. This paper sets the stage for a new theoretical framework and an applied approach for the design and fabrication of geometrically and materially complex functional designs coined Fabrication Information Modeling (FIM). We demonstrate systems designed to integrate form generation, digital fabrication, and material computation starting from the physical and arriving at the virtual environment. The paper reviews four computational strategies for the design of custom systems through multi-scale trans-disciplinary data, which are classified and ordered by the level of overlap between the modeling media and the fabrication media: (1) the first model takes as input biological data and outputs 3D printed digital materials organized according to functional constraints; (2) the second model takes as input geometry and environmental data and outputs robotically wound fibers organized according to functional constraints; (3) the third model takes as input material and environmental data and outputs CNC deposited pastes organized according to functional constraints; (4) the forth model takes as input biological, material and environmental data and outputs robotically deposited polymers organized according to functional constraints. The analysis of these models will demonstrate the FIM approach and point towards its value to designers who seek to inform their work through multi-scale trans- disciplinary data, a capability that is currently missing from standard design-to-fabrication workflows. Access the online MRS proceedings here. Access conference link here. Access CFP here.
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