Peter Heppel is an independent engineer specializing in lightweight structures and aerodynamics.

He has created a number of innovative structures, including major lightweight or tall buildings such as the landmark Scottish National Science Center Tower. He has worked with many leading architects including Renzo Piano, Richard Rogers, Norman Foster, Daniel Andreu, Richard Horden, Jeremy Dixon, Walker Group, Fox & Fowle, and Frei Otto.

He was the design leader for NASA's Advanced Inflatable Airlock, part of the SLI initiative.
Current collaborations include the mobile roof for the Starlight Theater, Rockford, IL, and Studio Gang's marble tension jigsaw for the NBM, Washington DC.

His innovations have been in the fields of structures and application of materials as well as in aerodynamics. He is a recognized expert in the design and structural mechanics of high performance yacht sails, having taken part in the America's Cup competition since 1982. In the marine field he has also developed the structural solutions for several high-speed craft as well as for dock and marina facilities.

Artist collaborators include visual artists Susumu Shingu, Thierry Vidé and Janet Echelman,, film director Ridley Scott (Gladiator) and various performance art groups.

He is an accomplished trans-oceanic sailor and is a visiting professor at Technical University, Vienna, Stanford University and Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago.

Thomas Ricard. M. Eng.

Thomas Ricard is graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Grenoble National Polytecnical Institute and has recently obtained his Masters Degree from the University of Auckland, where he worked extensively with Prof Peter Jackson and Prof. Andy Philpott on sail design software development and race simulation.

He has recently joined Peter Heppel with responsibility for software development, using his exceptional abilities in mathematics and geometry.





Glasgow 's Wing Tower , America 's Cup rigs, inflatable airlocks, Mobile wind sculptures overhanging public roads........ All need a complete understanding of structure behavior and careful engineering.

We are specialists in large displacement and wind-activated structures especially in complex materials such as textiles and laminates.





A degree in aeronautical engineering, the Wing Tower, The Sainsbury's shells, America's Cup sails....... Aerodynamic design has always been a strong thread.

Dynamic response under aerodynamic loads, designing the local wind environment, airfoil selection, boundary layer management, aerodynamic stability are all part of what we bring to every design project.




Computational geometry is an essential core skill for all staff, both in the numerical methods that we develop and in the designs themselves.

These skills enable us to treat the most complex data, as well as to make buildable even the most complex objects such as Studio Gang's Stone Curtain with 620 slightly different pieces.