Bird Aviary in Prague Zoo, Czech Republic

Structures Analyzed with Dlubal Software

  • Customer Project

Customer Project

At the end of April 2023, a new aviary was completed at the Sichuan Pavilion in the Prague Zoo. The aviary structure has a length of 45 ft (14 m) and a width of 33 ft (10 m). The company Carl Stahl & spol. created the architectural and structural design, calculated in RFEM 5.

Architecture, Design Project, Structural Analysis Carl Stahl & spol. s r.o.
Investor Prague Zoological Garden (Zoologická zahrada hl. m. Prahy)

Parameters of Aviary Structure


In the Prague Zoo, a new addition has been built – an aviary in the southern part of the Sichuan pavilion. The design reflects the years of experience of the designers and structural engineers, combined with quality software. This structure, completed at the end of April 2023, is elegant, light, and airy, completely adapted to the existing environment.


The aviary, with a length of 45 ft (14 m) and a width of 33 ft (10 m), reaches its highest point at 16.5 ft (5 m) above the prepared terrain. The structure consists of a pair of steel columns, supported by stainless-steel cables and an arch with a diameter of 50 ft (15.5 m). To ensure stability and wind resistance, there are stainless-steel peripheral cables around the entire perimeter of the structure, and a stainless-steel net is stretched on the structure.

Structural Analysis

A key element of the optimal design was the structural analysis performed in RFEM 5 with the RF‑FORM‑FINDING add-on module. The nets were modeled with generalized quadrangles, using an orthotropic membrane and an elastic 2D material, which allowed the creation of a model that is close to reality. The cables were modeled as tension members and the form-finding analysis was performed, taking into account the required sag.

The subsequent structural design analyzed the supporting elements of the structure and details, especially the connections of the steel structures. These details were subjected to a detailed structural analysis using RF‑STEEL Surfaces, with particular focus on stresses and strains. The calculation according to the large deformation analysis considered the permanent loading, prestress, snow loads, and wind loads. This detailed analysis guarantees the stability and safety of the entire structure.

The innovative structure of the aviary reflects not only architectural art, but also a detailed technical assessment, ensuring the efficient and safe use of this structure for birds in the Prague Zoo environment.

Project Location

Czech Republic


Pavilion for Birds Aviary Membrane Structures

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  • Updated 11/28/2023

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