The Geneva headquarters of ST Microelectronics has a mechanically-ventilated double skin facade called Permasteelisa Interactive Wall®.
Opting for a highly transparent building envelope means that occupant comfort and energy consumption become top priority concerns from the earliest stage of design. Intelligent application of shading devices will enable the building envelope to act as a filter between indoor and outdoor environments, letting in as much daylight as possible, while reducing solar gains as required.
Permasteelisa’s Blue Technology® provides an integrated design approach: building envelope and environmental systems are part of a single synergic solution, providing transparency without jeopardising occupant comfort and energy consumption. Moreover, buildings costs are the same as for a similar building with conventional technology.
Double skin facades are an excellent alternative to external shading. Costly installation and maintenance are avoided as are wind resistance problems. The shading devices are positioned between the two layers or “skins” of glazing, capturing the solar energy in the cavity. Solar energy is expelled in periods of high gains (and high cooling demands), reducing cooling energy consumption.
The glazing configuration of the interactive facade comprises a single external layer of glass and an internal insulating glazing unit. The cavity is ventilated by external air introduced at the base of the glazing and expelled at the top thanks to a system of temperature-regulated fans located in the facade itself.
The Interactive Wall® is ideal when cooling loads are a major concern. Its low solar factor is comparable to external shading and naturally ventilated facades, with the added advantage, however, of a highly compact design. The facade takes up less space and is easier and cheaper to install.
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