Metal profiles assembly

The energy-efficient architecture is not conditioned to a certain image. This is clear in the work of Sauerbruch & Hutton, with a sober but colorful image.

This use of the double skin facade where the outer glass is patterned with a white serigraphy that gradually dilutes as one gets closer to the areas of vision may disappear as rapidly as it has spread. It is an easy way to blur the openings limits. In the case of this hotel in London, the opening is perfectly well defined on the wall in the interior skin. This technique harks back to the effect of traditional interior thin white curtains, except for the important difference that the curtain can be used to cover the openings with a very efficient light diffuser.

This emblematic building at the London financial district is characterized by keeping its formal unity beyond the differences existing in the design of the facades depending on their orientation. Case "Devoid from human scale (034)" talks about the southwest façade of this same building.Southeast and Norwest facades call our attention due to the sobriety that confers them the enormous glazed surface, only interrupted every three floors by horizontal bands of stainless steel.

Batlle and Roig resort in this occasion to a curtain wall where partial structures are assembled at each slab front without physical continuity between them. Glass panes are then supported over those partial structures to close the façade (have a look to "Cadireta" curtain wall structure). Each two glass panes are framed with an aluminum frame made with unitized panels profiles. Is it then a unitized façade or a curtain wall one? Maybe a mixture?

If the inner layer of the rain-screen façade at the Hotel AC was innovative, it was still more innovative the proposal for the neighboring office tower for the Zona Franca Consortium. Again the exterior image is a sober stone skin anchored over aluminum profiles; but on this occasion the inner layer made of boards over a steel framing was prefabricated, arriving to the site as panels.

St Giles is one of the latest projects designed by Renzo Piano’s studio with a dry fixed ceramic façade. In this case, they resort to unitized panels for its construction. Despite using the latest façade technologies, St Giles does not show the wit present in IRCAM or at the Rue Meaux dwellings complex.

In a city where iconic buildings follow each other, Grimshaw studio seeks to highlight using colour. Beyond chromatic issues, what we are interested to emphasize here is the complexity of the unitized panel formed by a double sheet and anchored in its upper third, at a certain distance from the top.The panel is transported, hoisted and placed with the double sheet already assembled. The interior sheet ensures water tightness and thermal insulation while the exterior, which partially covers the panel, acts as a solar protection.

The architects’ challenge in the NIDO building is to combine the residential use with the image of a high tertiary tower in the center of London guaranteeing the adequate level of comfort. To do so, they resort to two fundamental strategies. Firstly, the fragmentation of the facade plane in different areas, according to the different housing units. This firs strategy permits to combine views, ventilation and solar protection. Secondly, construction using unitized panels.