The OpenStructures (OS) project initiates a construction system where everyone designs for everyone. It was conceived and developed by Thomas Lommee and Christiane Hoegner.

It is an ongoing experiment that wants to find out what happens if people design objects according to a shared modular grid, a common open standard that stimulates the exchange of parts, components, experiences and ideas and aspires to build things together.

The ultimate goal is to initiate a universal, collaborative puzzle that allows the broadest range of people – from craftsmen to multinationals – to design, build and exchange the broadest range of modular components, resulting in a more flexible and scalable built environment.

An open modular system of this kind has the potential to:

  • generate flexible and dynamic puzzle structures rather than uniform modular entities
  • introduce variety within modularity
  • stimulate re-use cycles of various parts and component
  • enable collaborative (and thus exponential) innovation within hardware construction

All OpenStructures should be conceived as interdependent, dynamic puzzles. This means that they should be designed for disassembly and according to the same dimensional framework (the OS grid).

OS 4x4 full option

In order to facilitate their design processes, several design guidelines have been developed. These are rules of thumb that need to be considered while designing any OS part or component.


Rule of thumb No 1: design for disassembly

Favor assembly techniques that allow deconstruction without damage or loss in order to facilitate the re-use of components.

OS assembly techs


Rule of thumb No 2: design with recyclable materials

Favor, whenever possible, 100% synthetical or biological recyclable materials for your parts and components in order to support infinite material cycles after disassembly

OS certifiations


Rule of thumb No 3: design from the OS grid

Use the OS grid as a design tool when choosing dimensions, assembly points or interconnecting diameters in order to make your parts compatible with those of others.


  • favor part dimensions that are derived from the OS grid
  • position assembly points on parts according to the OS grid
  • choose part diameters that are derived from the OS grid


The OS grid is the centerpiece of the whole OS system. It’s the common metrical tool that is shared among all participants, which allows them to design interchangeable parts, components, and structures independently from each other. The grid is built up out of 4×4cm squares. The borders of these squares mark the cutting lines, its diagonals mark the assembly points and its enclosed inner circles define interconnecting diameters.

To facilitate the design- and building process of open modular objects, an OS-ruler of 60×60cm has been developed next to the basic 4×4cm square. This will allow every participant to apply the grid as a shared design tool while generating new parts, components or structures. Since 60×60cm is already a frequently used standard within both interiors and logistics, the 60×60cm will be especially suitable for designing interior structures. It will also enable the OS-model to integrate with the existing and thus hybridize our current built environment with new Open Components and Structures.

The OS rulers can be applied both physically and digitally as measuring- and design tools. They are free for all and can be obtained and used by everybody at all time.


/The contents of this post was taken from the OpenStructure website/
/To know more about the system and/or how to use it, click here/

Non è una scuola

Non è una scuola

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