Case Study On A Spherical Glass Shell

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributed



Transparency is a social demand – in both politics and architecture. Therefore, outstanding glass constructions are often located in buildings of political significance. We raised the question whether it is feasible to design a 26.0 m spherical glass shell to cover the assembly hall of the Austrian Parliament in Vienna. This structure will be post-tensioned by means of a cable net to prevent a decompression of the glass. The paper introduces in the full numerical design process: global form finding, a research on available joint designs and the calculation of the minimum cable force that is necessary to ensure that there is no tension in the glass at all. Additionally, a buckling analysis as a function of the joint stiffness ensured a stable structure. Based on this we proposed a method on how to cover a post-breakage scenario. It was concluded that it is feasible to design ambitious full glass shells while using the glass as a load-bearing material.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-118
JournalJournal of the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018

External IDs

Scopus 85049727168
ORCID /0000-0002-1130-3264/work/155291849



  • Glass, Numerical