Research Dialogue between Materials and Products in Architecture


  • Heidi Turunen Aalto University



architecture, interdisciplinarity, materials development, materials life cycle, materials research


The materials life cycle consists of several phases. If application areas are targeted for architecture, comprehending the demands of the end-use phase might not be clear at the research and development phase, leading to an entity appearing fragmented. The aim of this study is to help bring order to the material research or development phases. The objective is to generate a review tool, which helps to observe different areas where architecture operates, and contemplate simultaneously the aspects during the different phases of the material development. The review tool of the material life cycle consists of tracking the raw materials until the re-used raw material, resulting in eight different stages of the material life cycle. In addition, each of the eight stages of the material life cycle is possible to observe with the five different viewpoints, which are present in architecture. These eight material life cycle stages and five aspects have been formulated as a chart. The chart consists of 40 different approaches facilitating discussion between different operators during the different phases of the material development. The chart might help set goals, frame areas, and improve comprehension of the research and development processes of the materials, especially when interdisciplinarity is involved in the research process.