Facade covers of existing and new buildings using lightweight tensioned membranes of high-tensile, UV-resistant breathable or double-coated material, on the basis of custom plans.
TENSIONED FACADE MEMBRANES
The group of tensioned membrane products include tensioned facade membranes, which makes any building look unique, and can be used as a stand-alone face-wall or as a cover over existing masonry. Tensioned facade membranes are primarily made of perforated, high-tensile fabric (so-called mesh fabric) where the selection of materials depends on the openness and light transmission of the fabric. The application of tensioned facade membranes improves the energetic values of buildings (in the aspect of thermal absorption), larger buildings can be ventilated easier, and this solution is acceptable from fire safety- and disaster management aspects as well. In many cases, however, the facade membrane is used for design purposes to improve or change the appearance, nature or style of a specific building.
In contrast to conventional covers of steel wire mesh, tensioned facade membranes offer a much more affordable solution and are always fitted to the given building when manufactured. This material - thanks to its light weight/m2 properties and high tensile strength - can be used to cover large spans without intermediate support.
ADVANTAGES OF USING TENSIONED FACADE MEMBRANES
- favourable quality/price ratio compared to conventional facade covers
- diverse appearance to make the style of the building look unique
- ensures the ventilation of the building
- shades and protects the building
- the membrane structure has lighter dead weight and smaller transport volume
- can be installed with lower assembly costs
- long-lasting with minor maintenance demands
- suitable for advertising purposes
- special lighting may provide extraordinary visual effects
- easy maintenance and cleaning
STRUCTURE AND SHAPES
The supporting structures of the tensioned facade membranes are made with particularly diverse design and shapes. The style of the supporting structure is always adapted to the new or existing masonry. Since the facade membranes are designed to tolerate wind loads, the substructure must be capable of withstanding the forces from the membranes and to tolerate the meteorological loads.
One example to the supporting structures of facade membrane covers is cantilever framework anchored to concrete wall.
In case of bridges over larger spans, the membrane with a rail fixed to the substructure is a good solution, however, wire rope reinforcement is also required in this case to mitigate the effects of the wind.
Anchoring tensioned membranes to the framework is a good solution in case of open-deck car parks and other buildings with no fixed sidewalls - where ventilation and fire safety considerations are of utmost importance. In this case, the facade is made of smaller panels, which is a very practical solution for transport, maintenance and for an occasional replacement.
The material used in this case is a UV-resistant and dirt-repellent material with proper tensile strength, which can be expanded in both directions, and which has been developed specifically for the manufacturing of facade- or tensioned membranes. Facade membranes are usually made of perforated, so-called mesh fabric materials. In this case, in the aspect of architectural purposes and technical requirements, the openness and light transmission properties of the material should be taken into consideration when selecting the materials. Using digital printing processes or special exterior paints, both the mesh fabric and the PVC-coated membrane made of a single material can be used as an advertising surface to display different illustrations.
High-tensile technical textile with PVC coating on both sides
Heavy duty material; tensile strength usually ranging between 2500 and 10000 N/5 cm; the surface is treated with UV-resistant additive; B-s1-d0 or B-s2-d0 fire classification; colour is usually white due to its light transmission features and accommodating effect; the lifetime of the material is averagely 15 years depending on the weather conditions.
High-tensile textile glass with PTFE (teflon) coating on both sides
Heavy duty, long-lasting material; tensile strength usually ranging between 3000 and 8000 N/5 cm; the UV-resistant and dirt-repellent additives of the surface and the teflon-coating of the ground texture (textile glass) ensure a lifetime of 25 to 30 years or more. It is often used for covering stadium grandstands and fields due to its durability; since it requires no maintenance, its costs are guaranteed to return with long-term application.
High-tensile textile glass with silicone coating
Similar characteristics as PTFE products, however, its production technology is closer to that of PVC-coated products.
Tenara fluoropolymer architectural membrane
Covered with high-tensile PTFE-based flexible fluoropolymer coating, particularly high light transmission, exceptionally long lifetime. This material is perfectly suitable for manufacturing sliding membrane roofs.
ETFE foil without cloth substrates
The heavy duty, UV-resistant and dirt-repellent ethylene tetrafluoroethylene foil without cloth substrate can resist most chemicals. It is used often in highly transparent colour to cover the field-close parts of covered grandstands (parts near the inner ring) as illuminating sections, so that it can provide adequate amount of natural light for the growth of grass. In case of stadiums, the foil is used as lighting section in 1 layer. ETFE material can be used to make complete roof or facade covers in 2-3-4 layers with inflated cushion design, so that the building can meet the thermal absorption and heat transmission specifications by constant aeration (with compressed air) between the layers.
The manufacturing technology of the materials used for stadium roofs is different in each stage.
Material testing protocols and test assessment shall be adapted to the project before cutting; the treatment of the materials during the cutting, the method of cutting (manual cutting or PC-controlled automated cutting with automatic cutter) and the determination of compensation values are all different.
The cut pieces of different sizes are assembled with so-called welding seams. Demands concerning welding technology, machines, and auxiliary materials providing welding strength are different for each material. Graboplan has the machines and hardware capacity required for the assembly of different materials.
In the final stage of the manufacturing, that is, in the stage of folding and packaging, the different materials are folded and packed in accordance with the order of on-site assembly and technology.
An important aspect during the folding of the materials is to avoid folding rough edges in order to maintain the integrity of the coating and of the fibres.
Graboplan provides the following services with regard to the covering of stadiums:
COUNSELLING, CONTRIBUTION TO THE PLANNING
The advices of our experienced engineers and manufacturing specialists concerning the roof structural and anchoring requirements of the subsequent membranes (reduction of the amount of steel required for the primary supporting structure, concept design of secondary auxiliary supports on the main support) should be taken into consideration at the stage of concept planning.
DEVELOPING THE CONCEPT, FORM-FINDING
The ideal membrane shape is developed by taking the local conditions – structure, anchoring, meteorological loads, roof type – into consideration with 3D form-finding analysis.
Preparation of scale model: before finalising the concept, it is possible to prepare a life-sized model to eliminate occasional planning errors and technical solutions that wouldn’t work in practice.
SELECTION OF MATERIALS, DETERMINING METHOD OF ANCHORING
The strength, quality and type of the load-bearing material required for the given roof or facade cover can be specified on the basis of preliminary static calculations, after the assessment of material tests. The type of the membrane anchoring can be finalised on the basis of the selected material, the type of the primary support, and on the basis of the preliminary static calculations.
ESTABLISHING THE BUDGET
The budget for the roof or facade membrane cover of a project can be prepared in light of the materials and the anchoring method.
DATA PROVISION FOR AUTHORISATION PROCEDURE
We prepare the membrane drawings, data provision concerning dynamics and preliminary designs for the authorisation design documentation of the construction as agreed.
PREPARATION OF PRODUCTION PLANS
The manufacturing of the tensioned membrane and of the anchoring will be performed on the basis of elaborated plans approved by the customer.
PREPARING PRODUCTION PLAN AND ASSEMBLY CONCEPT
Simultaneously with the selection of materials will the preparation of the manufacturing technology and assembly concept start, which, among others, shall include the performance of tests before, during and after the production, the determination of product control processes, procedural and final inspections, manufacturing technology, welding processes, folding and packaging concepts, the manpower and machinery needs of the on-site assembly, and the elaboration of proper assembly technology.
Technology and manufacturing capacities adapted to the dimensions and technical requirements of the project, using state-of-the-art machines: CAD/CAM computer-controlled plotter, high-frequency welding machines (for PVC-, PE- and PU-coated materials), pressing machines (for PTFE- and silicone-coated and Tenara materials).
We arrange the delivery of ordered products to any part of the world with shipping by road, by air or by sea.
Our group of experienced mechanics will perform the assembly of our tensioned membranes in any country of the world, under the supervision of Graboplan project managers: our mechanics have IRATA certificates, they are qualified to perform work at height, to operate machinery, they have personal protective equipment and special equipment for assembly.
PREPARATION OF DELIVERY DOCUMENTATION
Preparation of as-built drawings, specifications of materials installed, technical data sheets, declarations of performance with product-related user-maintenance instructions.