The Big Lid: Stadium Roof Design

Sports stadium roofs come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and require state of the art engineering techniques to make sure they stand up.

This University of Cambridge project pack provides an opportunity to investigate the physics and mathematics involved with designing stadium roofs.

The end aim of the project is for students to design their own stadium roof, informed by research into and interrogation of a number of existing roof types. Activities involved in this process include:

  • Judging a selection of existing stadium roof types based on consideration of factors such as weight, support types, materials and construction method
  • Consideration of the real life issues associated with stadium roof design, including but not limited to the amount of light being let in to preserve the grass, material costs and desired control over internal weather conditions
  • Exploration of the many forces and loads that affect stadium roofs
  • Making and testing a scale model of an existing or proposed stadium roof to physically describe the factors affecting roofs

Access the Project Pack (via University of Cambridge)