tug tent

Marcel Bohr

Juli / July - 2018

Burg Giebichenstein Kunsthochschule Halle


The tug tent is an outdoor concept based on a smart mechanism. It is the result of a research project about auxetic structures. To built up the tent you simply need to pull on its fabric. Thereby the frame will unfold creating a stable body with the fabric.

What is the Topic?

Tents are causing particular difficulties from an ecological point of view. They are usually made out of materials which are not recyclable. However, due to their robust and lightweight properties there is a clear reason for these materials to be used. The tug tent demonstrates how to use these materials and their properties to create an intuitive mechanism which results in a long-lasting solution. This mix out of durability and simplicity shows how product can be more sustainable and fun altogether.

Why does it look like this?

The cone shape is a logical consequence of the simple built-up mechanism. Therefore the bag will be attached with two pegs. The tent can be removed from the bag by pulling on the opposite side. Thereby the frame will unfold creating a steady body joined by its fabric. The tent only uses one bow to keep it simple and light. When opening the entrance, rope guides will automatically balance out the occurring loss in tension. To dismantle, you only need to pull the pegs and the tent will collapse. Guided by the natural tent structure, further packing becomes obvious.

What is special?

Pop-up tents enjoy immense popularity particularly regarding occasional campers. Whereas pop-up tents are specifically focused on the built-up yet most of them cannot be repaired. In contrast this concept takes the whole use into consideration. The simple and easy mechanism delights the user during building up and taking down. The modularly assembled frame can be exchanged or repaired in case of damage and thereby resulting in a considerably longer life span. Although the frame is completely covered by the textile tiny slots allow access to it. Due to the small packaging size and its repairability the tug tent meets the necessary conditions to even be used as a pop-up tent for backpackers or hikers.

What is new?

Considering a strong demand for pop-up tents, there appears to be a discrepancy between what is sustainably acceptable and what users pay attention to when buying a tent. The tug tent closes this gap taking the whole utilisation cycle into account. A particular aim for future products should be to remain in use for as long as possible. This particularly needs to be put into account, if the material is hard to recycle.