Pilkington Achieves First Class Honours At Middlesex University

10 July 2009
The Hatchcroft building at Middlesex University has had an education in construction thanks to Pilkington Planar Activ™ Sun. The world’s leading structural frameless glass system, combined with excellent thermal control properties and a self-cleaning coating, provides an external glass envelope for the south-facing front stair tower in the newly-built teaching block.
Middlesex University

The Hatchcroft building, previously known as the Teaching and Research Building, opened in September 2008 and is a crucial part of the university campus, comprising lecture theatres and state-of-the-art research laboratories. Installers Ide Contracting Ltd were involved in the construction of stairs at the forefront of the building, which have been enveloped with Pilkington Planar Activ™  Sun, creating an attractive feature for the campus and its students, allowing a large amount of light into the building.

Pilkington Planar™  is a frameless structural glazing system which utilises countersunk stainless steel fittings which fix the glass to the structure and remove the need for unsightly supporting framework.  Pilkington Activ™  self-cleaning glass was also specified to help reduce maintenance and ensure that the new structure looks its best at all times.  Pilkington Activ™  uses daylight  and rainwater to help break down and wash away organic dirt from exterior surfaces, making it ideal for hard to reach places where cleaning is difficult or costly (e.g. high rise buildings, roof lights and conservatories), or where good visibility is important.

Pilkington Planar Activ™ Sun  incorporates a  Sun coating on the  inner pane which provides  excellent solar control properties, helping to keep internal temperatures cooler in the summer whilst maintaining excellent, neutral light transmittance as well as giving a 1.2 mid pane ‘U’ value for the glazed walls. The glass helped the building achieve an excellent BREEAM rating – an environmental measurement of the individual components that make up a building. It takes into account the energy cost, environmental implications of the raw material construction, running and recycling costs - in order to give an overall picture of the sustainability of the building. BREEAM is designed to help construction professionals understand and mitigate the environmental impacts of their projects.

Christine Banks of architects BPR, said: “The concept behind the project was to inject some light and style into the building, which Pilkington Planar Activ™  Sun facilitated with ease. As the building plays an important role for the campus, comprising two large size lecture theatres and state-of-the-art laboratories for biomedical, computing science and psychology, we wanted to use a product to create a striking yet practical feature for the project, to give the students perfect surroundings to study in.

“Pilkington Planar Activ™  Sun provided us with the architectural freedom, functionality, and necessary cleaning properties so that we could design a building that would look first-class whilst being easy to maintain, in order to reduce the costs associated with cleaning.”

The Pilkington Planar Activ™  Sun glazing system provides a flush glass surface by utilising stainless steel fittings housed in countersunk holes to fix the glass façade to the structure, instead of using more conventional framed systems. The result is a fully engineered system with the minimum of structure and the maximum visual clarity combined with the self cleaning properties of Pilkington Activ™.

For more information please visit www.pilkington.co.uk/planar

Specification:

133m2 10mm Pilkington Planar Sun coated 73/39 with Pilkington Activ™  argon filled IGUs