STACKED UP AT THE ROWETT INSTITUTE September 2016
Replacing the institute’s former facilities located at Bucksburn, the new purpose-built facilities on the Foresterhill Site brings together researchers, scientists, clinicians and patients to create a world-leading research institute, specialising in nutrition and health.
Providing more than 10,000 square metres of floor space, arranged over six floors, the new building was designed by Halliday Fraser Munro Architects to achieve a BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ rating. This is the highest rating a building can achieve on this sustainability scale.
Levolux, a world-leading solar shading and screening specialist, was invited to work collaboratively with the architect to develop a comprehensive external solar shading and screening solution. This has been applied in front of floor to ceiling glazing, across four levels and all four elevations.
The solution comprises an external frame, which envelops the rectangular-shaped building, extending 55 metres in length by 43 metres in width.
Projecting 1.5 metres from the building’s glazed envelope, the framework of louvres is formed from rectangular-shaped aluminium extrusions. The louvres, each measuring 300mm wide by 50mm thick, are fixed horizontally and vertically, creating an irregular grid, with openings that vary in height and width.
To provide effective solar shading, horizontal Aerofoil Fins have been fitted horizontally between vertical louvres at high level on each floor. The extruded aluminium Fins have been grouped into rows of four, each measuring 300mm wide by 50mm thick. The Fins are set at an angle of 60 degrees and at a pitch of 400mm, to deliver the optimum level of shading to prevent excessive solar heat gain, without compromising daylight levels and outward visibility for occupants.
The grid of horizontal and vertical louvres is secured back to a series of aluminium walkways, each measuring 1.2 metres in width. Levolux’s extruded aluminium Walk-on Brise Soleil system has been utilised to introduce a series of continuous horizontal structures at three levels. The system features ‘j’ tread elements and handrails to provide a safe, non-slip platform. This allows easy access to the façade for cleaning and routine maintenance.
To complete the solution, Levolux incorporated its Matrix Brise Soleil system at the top of the louvred structure to form a horizontal projection. Also measuring 1.2 metres in width, the Brise Soleil structure comprises a series of ‘Z’ shaped aluminium louvres, fixed at 165mm centres. This provides the desired degree of shading for the building’s upper level.
Louvres, Aerofoil Fins and Walkways have been combined effectively on the building to satisfy stringent project criteria. These include delivering an attractive and distinctive external aesthetic, preventing excessive solar heat gain, maximising daylight levels, maintaining good outward visibility and facilitating access to the façade for cleaning and maintenance.
Completed in December 2015, the new home of the Rowett Institute for Nutrition and Health, which celebrated its centenary in 2013, is now fully functional. By leveraging cutting-edge green building technology, such as the external solar shading and screening solution provided by Levolux, the institute is ideally equipped to realise its 10-year vision to become the foremost international research institute in nutrition.