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Ana Gatóo

Teaching Associate | PhD Candidate |
Partner. Light Earth Designs


Ana Gatóo is a Teaching Associate at the Department of Architecture at Cambridge University and a PhD candidate at the Centre for Natural Material Innovation also at Cambridge where she previously worked as a researcher for three years, developing better housing for low income populations. Ana is researching affordable housing solutions with natural materials and digital tools for future cities.
She is also a partner at Light Earth Designs, a practice focused on environmentally sensitive architecture and innovative engineering, a Committee Advisor for REDER Journal and a Board Advisor for Prospectives Journal. Her undergraduate studies in Engineering culminated in the investigation of earth as a building material. Her graduate studies in Architecture focused on timber and bamboo. Ana has also worked for a few years for international NGOs on emergency architecture and disaster response in various countries.

Research Abstract:

Digital design and fabrication are changing the relationship between design and construction. New methods are giving rise to innovative ways of thinking about architecture. This project aims to expand timber structural applications through digital design for future sustainable and affordable cities.
Timber is a sustainable material with excellent structural properties. Through offsite digital fabrication and fast on site assembly, it could reduce not only construction time but also emissions, cost, transport and the weight of buildings. The development of the construction sector is well behind the automotive or aerospace industries. The CO2 emissions of the sector account for almost a 40% of the global emissions. Harvesting timber from sustainable forests gives space for new planting, leading to continued carbon uptake, allowing increasing timber infrastructure to store evermore carbon.
The UN Declaration of the Human Rights stipulates the right for adequate living, however more than a billion people do not have access to adequate housing. With a much needed environmental change in our way of living and improvement on housing standards, digital timber could be the answer to the design of new affordable and environmental cities

Key Publications:

Peer Reviewed Articles
Bukauskas, A., Koronaki, A., Lee, T.U., Ott, D., Al Asali, M.W., Jalia, A., Bashford, T., Gatóo, A., Newman, J., Gattas, J.M., Shah, D.U. and Ramage, M.H, (2021). Curved-crease origami face shields for infection control. Plos one, 16(2), p.e0245737.

Liu, X., Smith, G., Jiang, Z., Bock, M., Boeck, F., Frith, O., Gatóo, A., Liu, K., Mulligan, H., Semple, K., Sharma, B., & Ramage, M. (2016). “Nomenclature for Engineered Bamboo”. BioResources, 11(1), 1141-1161. (21pp). doi:10.15376/biores.11.1.1141-1161.

Wagemann, E, Gatóo, A, Ramage, M.H. (2015) “Bahay Kawayan. Post Disaster Housing in Bamboo.” ARQ, August, no.90, Estructuras Desmontables, Ediciones ARQ: pp.68-69. (2 pp)

Sharma B, Gatóo A, Ramage M.H. (2015) “Effect of processing methods on the mechanical properties of engineered bamboo.” Journal of Construction and Building Materials, 83: pp 95-101. (7 pp).

Sharma B, Gatóo A, Bock M, Ramage M.H. (2015) “Engineered Bamboo for structural applications.” Journal of Construction and Building Materials, 81: pp 66-73. (8 pp).

Sharma, B., Gatóo, A., Bock, M., Mulligan H., Ramage M.H. (2014). “Engineered bamboo: state of the art. "Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers: Construction Materials. 168:2, pp 57-67. (11 pp)

Gatóo, A., Sharma, B., Bock, M., Mulligan H., Ramage M.H. (2014). “Sustainable structures: bamboo standards and building codes.” Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers: Engineering Sustainability 167 (ES5). pp 189–96. (8 pp)

Conference Papers:
Gatóo, A., Koronaki, A., Al Asali, M.W., Bukauskas, A., Gin, Y., Shah, D.U., Wiegand, E., Ramage, M.H., (2021) Flexible and sustainable building components through kerf patterns. In Proceedings of IASS Annual Symposia, 2021,. International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS), 2021.

Gatóo, A., Ramage, M.H (2021) "Digital Timber: A future for affordable housing". In World Conference on Timber Engineering (WCTE) 2021.

Ramage, M.H., Hall, T., Gatóo, A., Al Asali. W (2018) “Rwanda Cricket Stadium: Seismically Stabilized Tile Vaults.” Proceedings of the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS): Creativity in Structural Design. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Boston. US

Sharma B, Gatóo A, Ramage, M.H. (2015) “Natural Fibre Composites: Engineered Bamboo for Construction” Proceedings of the 7th Biennial Conference on Advanced Composites In Construction (ACIC), Cambridge, UK, pp. 41-46. (6 pages)

Ramage M.H., Sharma B, Gatóo A, Konstantatou M, Reynolds T, Fereday G, Fleming P, Shah D, Wagemann E.(2015) “Prelude: the future of structural bamboo.” Proceedings of the International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures (IASS): Future Visions, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. (9 pages)

Sharma B, Gatóo A, Ramage M.H. (2015) “Engineered Bamboo: Material Innovation for a Sustainable Built Environment.” Engineering Sustainability, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (2 pages)

Ramage, M.H., Bock, M., Gatóo A., Mulligan, H., B. Sharma, Y. Xu. (2014) “Structural Bamboo Products: A Novel Engineering Material,” Forest Products Society International Convention, Quebec, Canada. (2 pages)

Mulligan, H., Bock, M., Gatòo, A., Sharma, B.,Xu, y., Ramage, M.H.. (2014) “Comparing Life Cycle Analysis of Typical bamboo Board Products from China and Colombia,” Forest Products Society International Convention, Quebec, Canada. (2 pages)

Ana Gatóo
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