Edith Cowan University Kingspan Dri Design Hook on Cassette

Edith Cowan University (ECU) Sciences Building

Fully encased in Kingspan products, ECU Sciences building is highly energy efficient and its unique façade is now claimed to be the world’s largest periodic table.

The Project

The concept for the new science building at Edith Cowen University, Joondalup Campus was to deliver a design which makes the most of the urban location with a bold and sophisticated architectural statement. Fully encased in products from Kingspan Insulated Panels range, the building is highly energy efficient and its unique façade is now claimed to be the world’s largest periodic table.

The exciting new science building at Edith Cowen University, Perth, was thoughtfully designed by Silver Thomas Hanley Architects, with the façade featuring the periodic table to celebrate the building’s purpose as a centre of scientific research and learning. The idea stemmed from the university Vice Chancellor Professor Steve Chapman. The table is an enormous 662 square metres, spanning the entire front facade of the building, so it was vital to carefully consider the scale, proportion and visual interest.

Architect:
Silver Thomas Hanley
Location:
Perth
Builder:
Multiplex
Installer:
Denmac
Photographer:
Silvertone Photo
Products:
Hook on Cassette, Dri Design, Eurobond Rainspan, Insulated Box Gutters, Trapezoidal Wall
Completed:
2020

ECU's feature ‘Periodic Table’ is made up of 360 Kingspan Hook-On cassettes in four different colours. While the Hook-On cassettes were used to build the periodic table, a combination of both Flat and Shadow Dri-Design cassettes were used to provide architectural expression to the other three elevations, also integrating elements from within the Periodic Table, though using much larger perforated lettering to expand on the feature.

These cassettes not only serve a visual purpose, but also respond to the local climate to maintain a comfortable temperature inside the building. Creating a screen that helps deflect solar heat and control glare, while also allowing natural light into the rooms. Blank panels have been left on the periodic table, so if new elements are discovered they can be added to the building’s façade. The simple colour and material palette draws on the visual language of the original buildings, creating a stunning yet harmonious addition to the campus.

The cassette systems are able to be installed twice as fast as comparable systems through their unique design and construction methodology, which proved a benefit to Multiplex and pulled back a delayed site programme once the installation of the façade started.

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Edith Cowan University Sciences Building Joondalup Campus
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Eurobond Rainspan from Kingspan was specified as the structural substrate to the rainscreen façade. An exceptional thermal insulator, providing continuity of insulation across the building envelope and delivering superior air tightness, combined they enhance the building performance by reducing the operational costs, lowering energy consumption and ultimately the buildings carbon footprint.

The Rainspan panels provided a simple substrate to the Dri Design cassettes, allowing them to directly fix to their external steel skin, utilising the structural integrity of the insulated panels and removing the requirement for the set of the traditional tophat support method. This further enhanced the thermal performance of the building, removing the usual thermal bridging that occurs when using a tophat and stud frame support method.

The use of Kingspan insulated RW roof panels was a thermal solution to close the roof off, encapsulating the complete building envelope in a structural and thermal performance warranty provided by Kingspan. Integrated with the roof system was the membrane lined insulated box gutters in order to further enhance the insulation properties of the building.   

Completed in early 2020, the building is now ready for students studying science, medicine or nursing courses.

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