Mark Schenk (PhD, MSc, BSc)
I am a post-doctoral researcher in deployable structures, working with the Surrey Space Centre at the University of Surrey.
Previously I worked with the Advanced Structures Group, in collaboration with Dr. Simon Guest. I did my PhD in Structural Engineering at the University of Cambridge, and studied Mechanical Engineering at Delft University of Technology where I obtained my BSc. and MSc. degrees.
My current research interests currently cover
- deployable structures
- inflatable space structures
- engineering origami
- zero stiffness structures
- compliant structures/mechanisms
My PhD research focused on the analysis and manufacture of novel "folded shell structures". These folded shell structures consist of thin-walled shells joined at distinct fold lines, which form meso scale unit cells that are tesselated across the sheet. It is the hierarchical deformation of these unit cells which prescribes the global mechanics of the shells. The observed mechanics include large in-plane strains (due to the opening and closing of the folds), as well as decoupled out-of-plane deformation modes which exhibit an opposite Poisson's ratio to the in-plane behaviour. The sheets considered for my PhD thesis are either directly derived from Origami patterns (meaning they can be folded from flat sheet material) or strongly inspired by origami folding.
For my Master thesis I investigated the "Theory and Design of Statically Balanced Tensegrity Mechanisms". Tensegrities are a special class of prestressed bar frameworks, where the self-stress is required for stability. I researched the combination with static balancing, by replacing the tension elements with zero-free-length springs. This allows the construction of structures that are in equilibrium over a continuous range of positions, require no external work to move and thus have zero stiffness. More information can be found on my tensegrity website.
Refereed Journal and Conference Publications
- Fernandez, J.M., Visage, L., Schenk, M., Stohlman, O.R., Aglietti, G., Lappas, V.J. & Erb, S. (2014), "Design and Development of a Gossamer Sail System for Deorbiting in Low Earth Orbit" submitted.
- Schenk, M. & Guest, S.D. (2013), "Geometry of Miura-Folded Meta-Materials"; Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), 110(9):3276--3281. [DOI]
- Schenk, M., Kerr, S., Smyth, A.M. & Guest, S.D. (2013), "Inflatable Cylinders for Deployable Space Structures " Proceedings of the First Conference Transformables 2013, 18—20th September 2013, Seville, Spain. [PDF]
- Schenk, M. & Guest, S.D. (2013), "On Zero Stiffness"; accepted for publication in the Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science. [PDF preprint | DOI]
- Schenk, M., Viquerat, A.D, Seffen, K.A. & Guest, S.D. (2013), "Review of Inflatable Booms for Deployable Space Structures: Packing and Rigidisation"; accepted for publication in the AIAA Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets.
- Schenk, M., Guest, S.D. & McShane, G.J (2013), "Novel Stacked Folded Cores for Blast-Resistant Sandwich Panels"; in review with the International Journal of Solids and Structures.
- de Paula Pellegrini, S., Tolou, N., Schenk, M. & Herder, J.L. (2013), "Bistable Vibration Energy Harvesters: a review." Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures, Volume 24 Issue 11. [DOI]
- Schenk, M., Allwood, J.M. & Guest, S.D. (2011), "Cold Gas-Pressure Folding of Miura-ori Sheets", proceedings of International Conference on Technology of Plasticity (ICTP 2011), September 25-30th, 2011, Aachen, Germany. Published in a special edition of Steel Research International. Pre-print: [PDF]
- Schenk, M., Guest, S.D., (2011), "Origami Folding: A Structural Engineering Approach". In Origami5, proceedings of 5OSME, 5th international conference on Origami in Science, Mathematics and Education, July 14-15th 2010, Singapore. pp. 293-305. ISBN: 9781568817149. Pre-print: [PDF]
- Barents, R., Schenk, M., Van Dorsser, W.D., Wisse, B.M., & Herder, J.L. (2011), "Spring-to-Spring Balancing as Energy-Free Adjustment Method in Gravity Equilibrators", ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, Volume 133, Issue 6, pp 061010. [DOI | PDF]
Winner of the Best Paper Award at the ASME IDETC/CIE 2009 conference, August 30-September 2, 2009, San Diego, CA. Paper number DETC2009-86770.
- Van Dorsser, W.D., Barents, R., Wisse, B.M., Schenk, M. & Herder, J.L. (2008), "Energy-Free Adjustment of Gravity Equilibrators by Adjusting the Spring Stiffness", Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers Part C, Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science, Volume 222, Issue 9, pp. 1839–1846. [DOI]
- Schenk, M., Guest, S.D. & Herder, J.L. (2007), "Zero Stiffness Tensegrity Structures", International Journal of Solids and Structures, Volume 44, Issue 20, pp. 6569–6583. [DOI | PDF]
- Schenk, M., Herder, J.L. & Guest, S.D. (2006), "Design of a Statically Balanced Tensegrity Mechanism", In proceedings of ASME IDETC/CIE 2006 conference, September 10-13th 2006, Philadelphia, USA. Volume 2: 30th Annual Mechanisms and Robotics Conference, Parts A and B, pp. 501-511. [PDF]
- Stohlman, O.R., Schenk, M. & Lappas, V.J. (2014), "Development of the Deorbitsail Flight Model" 55th AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics, and Materials Conference, 13–17 January 2014, National Harbor, Maryland. [PDF]
- Fernandez, J. M., Schenk, M., Prassinos, G., Lappas, V.J., Erb, S.O. (2013), "Deployment Mechanisms of a Gossamer Satellite Deorbiter" 15th European Space Mechanisms and Tribology Symposium 2013 (ESMATS 2013), 25–27th September 2013, Noordwijk, The Netherlands. [PDF]
- Lappas, V.J., Fernandez, J.M., Stohlman, O., Viquerat, A., Prassinos, G., Theodorou, T., Schenk, M. (2013), "Demonstrator Flight Missions at the Surrey Space Centre involving Gossamer Sails. The Third International Symposium on Solar Sailing, 11–13th June 2013, Glasgow.
- Viquerat, A.D., Schenk, M. & Lappas, V.J (2013), "DEPLOYTECH : nano-satellite testbeds for gossamer technologies" AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics and Materials Conference 2013, 8–11th April 2013, Boston, Massachusetts. Paper number AIAA 2013-1805.
- Stohlman, O.R., Schenk, M. & Lappas, V.J. (2013), "Development of the DeorbitSail Flight Model" 55th AIAA/ASME/ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics, and Materials Conference, 13–17 January 2014, National Harbor, Maryland.
- Schenk, M., Guest, S.D. (2009), "Folded Textured Sheets", In proceedings of IASS 2009 Symposium, September 28-October 2, 2009, Valencia, Spain. [PDF]
Theses & Reports
- Schenk, M. (2011). "Folded Shell Structures", PhD Thesis at University of Cambridge. [PDF]
- Schenk, M. (2008). "Textured Shell Structures", First-year PhD report at University of Cambridge.
- Schenk, M. (2006). "Theory and Design of Statically Balanced Tensegrity Mechanisms", Master's thesis at Delft University of Technology. [PDF]
- Schenk, M. (2005). "Statically Balanced Tensegrity Mechanisms — A Literature Review", Literature review at Delft University of Technology. [PDF]
Selected Talks & Presentations
- "Origami in Engineering and Architecture. An art spanning Mathematics, Engineering and Architecture.". As part of the 4th year Architectural Engineering course, I gave a lecture and workshop on 25th October 2012. This year a greater emphasis was put on engineering applications, with examples from ongoing research. [PDF]
- "Folded Shell Structures — Analysis & Manufacture". Structures Group Seminar, Cambridge University Engineering Department, October 14th 2011. [PPT]
- "Origami in Engineering and Architecture. An art spanning Mathematics, Engineering and Architecture.". As part of the 4th year Building Innovations course at the Cambridge University Engineering Department, I gave a lecture and workshop on 6th October 2011.
- "Cold Gas Pressure Folding of Miura-ori Sheets". Presented at the 10th International Conference on Theory of Plasticity (ICTP) 2011, September 28th, Aachen, Germany, presented by Julian Allwood. [PPT]
- "Designing a New Rosetta Stone: Making the Web last 500 Years". At the Clare Dilettante Society (May 16th 2011) I spoke about the standardisation of HTML and its role in preserving documents for future generations. The ensuing discussion raised a large number of interesting questions, and highlighted a lack of any real historical parallel.
- "Origami Folding: A Structural Engineering Approach". Presented at the 5OSME, 5th international conference on Origami in Science, Mathematics and Education, July 15th, 2010, Singapore. [PPT]
- "Folded Textured Sheets — from Origami to Concrete Formwork". Presented at the 3rd Clare College Research Symposium, March 11th 2010, Cambridge, UK. The Clare Research Symposium is an interdisciplinary symposium showcasing the research done by members of Clare College, Cambridge. [PPT]
- "Folded Textured Sheets". Structures Group Seminar, Cambridge University Engineering Department, October 16 2009. [PPT]
- "Origami for Engineers: Folded Shell Structures". Graduate Research Forum (GRF), Clare College, Cambridge, December 9 2008. [PPT]
- "Zero Stiffness Tensegrity Structures". CUED Structures Seminar, Cambridge, November 23 2007. [PPT]
- "The Art and Engineering of Origami", Article written for the Cambridge University Engineering Society magazine. Layout by Dan Bergsagel. [PDF]
- "Folded Shell Structures". Poster presented in the House of Commons on 9th March 2009, for the Engineering Session of SET for BRITAIN. [PDF]
- "Folded Shell Structures". Poster for Vitae EE Hub poster competition, presented December 4th 2008. The poster previously won the GSCUED poster competition, on October 22nd 2008. [PDF]
- Origami Cylinder GUI One application of engineering origami, is the use of origami fold patterns to compactly inflatable cylindrical booms for deployable space structures. As part of work on DeployTech I developed a small design tool in Matlab to explore different variations of fold patterns and assess their deployment strains: Origami Cylinder GUI.
Thomson & Tait Twisting Ring
Thomson & Tait Twisting Ring
As part of an upcoming paper 'On Zero Stiffness' we did some finite element simulations of the Thomson & Tait twisting ring. Take an initially straight rod with uniform bending stiffness, and bend it arbitrarily (but elastically) along its length. In this deformed configuration any twisting of the rod along its centroidal axis requires no torque, and the structure thus has zero stiffness. The explanation is immediately intuitive: there exists no preferential bending axis and thus any twisted orientation of the rod will have identical strain energy. This example was first described by William Thomson (later known as Lord Kelvin) and Peter Guthrie Tait in their 1867 Treatise on Natural Philosophy.
The mechanical behaviour is markedly different if an initially curved rod is subjected to the same loads, and a ring will deform into a saddle-shaped configuration.
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