Gayatri dome

This project has been built in Auroville, in the community of Auromodele, at Suryanivas as a pavilion which is meant to play a “spiritual game”.

The concept of this pavilion was based on a lotus shape, emerging from water. Thus the pointed shape of the dome and the building emerging like from a pond. The walls were built with compressed stabilised earth blocks, 14 cm thick and the roofing structure presents these features:
•    Octagonal pointed dome 6.4 m diameter, 4.4 m rise
•    Squinche dome and “Conical” vaults above the corner rooms
•    “Triangular” vault above the side galleries
•    Thickness of the vaults and dome: 7 cm
•    The dome and all vaults have been built free spanning

Segmental groined dome completed in 5 days with 4 masons

The entrance of the compound was marked by a monumental pointed arch. This arch was design to allow a truck to pass below and therefore no truss rod could be used. This arch was built on two pillars made of composite columns 290. Each pillar was composed of 4 columns 290 which were reinforced with 12 mm vertical bars.

The horizontal trust of this arch was going out of the pillars at about 70 cm above ground and therefore the pillars had to deal with the shear stress created by the horizontal trust. A special arrangement of the stirrups allowed the pillars to bear this shear. The arch was built on a centring done with block laid with a very sandy earth mortar, so as to be removed easily later on.



Arch completed, before removing the centring
Arch completed


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