BAU 2013: Materials, technologies, systems
BAU 2013 is a 180,000 m² showcase of materials, technologies and systems. That´s the equivalent of 23 football pitches filled with state-of-theart technology for the international building and construction industry.
Windows and doors have a long tradition at BAU. Visitors get to see a wide range of product solutions made of, for example, wood, plastics, glass and aluminum, and they can also gather all the latest information on what developments are happening in solar shading. A main theme with all the products presented is the energy turnaround, as windows and doors are a key component in buildings and they therefore play a big part in achieving this ambitious goal. Solutions are offered in the design of glass and in thermally optimized profiles. With wooden frames for example, there is a trend towards deeper profiles, in order to optimize the insulation properties and make it easier to use triple glazing, while with plastic frames, the preference is for designs without steel reinforcement, for reasons of thermal insulation. Solar shading systems, too, decentralized ventilation technology and energy storage with phase-change materials reduce energy losses and cooling loads. In the headquarters of Der Spiegel in Hamburg, for example, Henning Larsen Architects designed the building envelope as a naturally ventilated doubleskinned facade – the inner skin being made up of wooden-framed windows with triple insulated glazing and integrated solar shading.
One way of increasing energy efficiency is offered by shading systems such as Venetian blinds, awnings and roller blinds – excellent results can be achieved here in combination with light-deflecting systems. Glass and photovoltaics also offer the possibility of passive and active (for electricity) exploitation of solar energy. To prevent the formation of mold in building interiors, there is a range of ways to improve ventilation: motorized opening mechanisms or window fittings with new functions; and when modernizing buildings, ventilation systems built into the window are also a good idea. The trend here, too, is in the direction of automation – one example being the mechatronic window with intelligent chain drive to control ventilation.
As well as gate and parking systems, visitors can look forward to a wide variety of doors, gates, frames and accessories, plus new developments in lifts and escalators, gate and door drive technology and building automation and building management systems. Promising new developments are emerging in particular in electric motors and access controls: hidden house door drives, automated solar shading and modern access controls are all ways of increasing security and maximizing user comfort. One example of successful use of these futuristic technologies is demonstrated at the Hotel Scandic in Berlin, designed by Reichel + Stauth. Universal design and energy-efficiency are also increasingly key aspects in design, echoing the main focuses at the upcoming BAU.
Fired clay is one of the oldest building materials used by man. Tiles made of this material have been used for thousands of years, in a wide range of applications, for example on walls and floors. But this authentic product with its archaic charm is also being used in facade systems and sanitation products. Despite its long tradition, there is still great potential in ceramic tiles. New techniques are being applied, such as the adaptation of digital printing techniques for tiles, and also in spectacular projects such as the Museum of Cultures in Basel, designed to plans by Herzog & de Meuron. The new, multi-angled roof storey of this museum is clad with concave, convex and flat ceramic components with an iridescent green-black glaze, giving the building a very sophisticated look. New developments to be presented at BAU 2013 display a subtle refinement, and, with their new formats, offer plenty of scope for creative applications. The trend here is on the one hand to super-sized dimensions with side lengths of up to 120 cm, and on the other to delicate, just 1 x 1 cm sized mosaic tiles. As well as the visual benefits, these products are also supremely practical in use. At the production stage, special surface finishes can be added to give particular user benefits, for example, easy-clean tiles, an antibacterial effect, achieved without chemicals, and surfaces that can even help reduce smells and air pollution.
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