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expand the palette of material components,
environments and complex interactions made
possible through self-assembly.
One of the important benefits for design
offered by self-assembly systems is an
expanded exploration through bottom-up,
emergent solutions. Fluid Lattices (2014)
was a study of emergent lattice formations,
similar to the processes of crystal growth, in a
fluidic environment. For this study, a number
of identical units were individually released
inside a 1,900-litre (500-gallon) tank of water
while pumps were positioned around the tank
to create turbulent flow. Each individual unit
was made of a thin plastic sheet folded into a
truncated cube and had a single weak magnet
embedded in each of the six main sides to allow
for bonding and error-correction. After being
released in the water, the units gradually formed
clusters and eventually aggregated into a single
cubic-lattice structure.
The topology of the final lattice was based
on the complex variables in the environment,
including the interactions of the units and the
fluid flow. For example, if the pumps were
positioned on the sides of the tank, three-
dimensional formations emerged, whereas
if the pumps were positioned on the bottom
surface pointing upwards, two-dimensional
configurations ...

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