Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Levolux tastes success at Dominos


No matter how hot it gets outside, employees inside Domino’s Pizza Group’s new Headquarters building in Milton Keynes will remain cool, thanks to natural ventilation and a comprehensive Solar Shading solution, courtesy of Levolux.

The 2,274m2 building, which is adjacent to a recently completed Commissary facility, accommodates over 150 employees, divided between head office functions such as IT, marketing, property, procurement and finance. The visually striking building is arranged over three main floors, with a lower ground floor main entrance and a fifth floor penthouse boardroom.

To ensure the building achieved a BREEAM (BRE Environmental Assessment Method) ‘Excellent’ rating, q2 architects incorporated a host of state-of-the-art features into their design, including natural ventilation, high thermal mass, night cooling, solar water heating, rainwater harvesting and Solar Shading.

To protect the building against excessive solar heat gain on the west elevation, helping to maintain a comfortable environment for occupants year-round, Levolux was chosen to develop a tailored Solar Shading solution. The solution comprised external sliding Timber Fin panels, with integrated timber decking and internal motorised Blinds.

In total, Levolux designed, manufactured and installed 36 Timber Fin panels, formed from Western Red Cedar, sandwiched between aluminium side plates. The panels are arranged in 12 groups of 3, distributed between the third and fourth floors, to protect the building’s full height glazing.

While the exposed front panel in each group is fixed in place, two others are manually operable, suspended from aluminium tracks overhead. The panels operate in front of, and are integrated into, two full length balconies, approximately 1.5 metres deep, formed from Balau Timber Decking.
The Timber Fin panels, each measuring 60mm deep and 1.9 metres wide, with a height of up to 3.5 metres, not only create an attractive, natural external aesthetic, but also provide an adjustable ventilated screen for the two balconies and provide varying degrees of shade to maintain a light, but cool internal working environment.

To complete the solution Levolux also designed and installed internal, motorised Roller Blinds throughout the building and a motorised Vertical Louvre Blind system in the fifth floor boardroom.

In total, 63 internal motorised Roller Blinds were installed across three floors, connected to an intelligent KNX control system. This allows Blinds to be controlled individually or in groups with extreme precision.

Intuitive wall-mounted switches provide occupants with four programmable settings, including fully open or closed and two intermediate stops. When one of these four positions is selected, all Blinds set at the same position throughout the building will be perfectly aligned, with a maximum tolerance of just 1.5mm, maintaining a seamless, co-ordinated aesthetic.

Finally, motorised Vertical Louvre Blinds were installed against curved glazing in the fifth floor boardroom and can be opened, closed or angled at the click of a switch.

All Blinds feature an attractive light grey fabric, which complements the internal decor, with a 5% openness factor to help control daylight levels while reducing glare.  

The complete solution, including external Timber Fin panels, timber decking and Internal Blinds, like all other Levolux solutions, are backed by the company’s design, manufacture and installation package.
Domino’s Pizza is recognised as the world’s leading pizza delivery company and like one of its culinary creations, its new headquarters building in Milton Keynes boasts quality ingredients, including a ‘tasty’ solar shading solution from Levolux.

For more information, visit www.levolux.com.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Levolux weaves its magic in Threadneedle Street


Designed by Eric Parry Architects to offer a five star working environment in central London, 60 Threadneedle Street is a striking 10 storey office building, with its imposing curved exterior, floor to ceiling glazing and a host of energy saving features, including a comprehensive Solar Shading solution from Levolux. The building provides more than 18,000 m2 of highly desirable office space.

Levolux provided an extensive range of products which combine to deliver the perfect blend of form and function. The bespoke solution, comprising aerofoil-shaped Screening Louvres, Ventilation Louvres, High Performance Ventilation Louvres, Photovoltaic (PV) integrated Glass Fins and Internal Roller Blinds perform a vital role in improving the building's energy efficiency.

A series of vertically stacked, horizontal 75mm deep High Performance Ventilation Louvres, were installed at roof level to screen and ventilate each of the building’s service risers. Patented, high performance “S” profile louvres prevent water ingress and have an integral mesh panel which provides a physical barrier to birds and insects.

Ventilation Louvres, with the same “S” profile, were also incorporated at roof level to create a seamless, 4 metre high by 123 metre long, ventilated enclosure which conceals unsightly plant and equipment. The louvred facade is curved to follow the contours of the building and incorporates sliding and hinged access doors.
 The patented High Performance Ventilation Louvre from Levolux is formed from single-piece extruded aluminium and in independent tests it outperformed all double bank and triple bank louvres (Tested in accordance with EN13030 Edition 5).

The aerodynamic "S" profile louvre can be pitched at 50mm or 75mm, which provides the optimum balance between air flow, visual screening and weatherability.

Like the aerofoil-shaped Screening Louvres, PV integrated Glass Fins and internal Roller Blinds, the Ventilation Louvres installed on this prestigious project are backed by Levolux's design, manufacture and installation package. 

For more information, visit www.levolux.com.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Levolux fills its sails in Felixstowe


The headquarters building in Felixstowe created for China Shipping (UK) Agency and Johnson Stevens Agencies, one of the world’s largest shipping container companies, features Western Red Cedar Timber Fins from market leader Levolux, which protect office workers from solar heat gain.

The solution, which also includes a UK-first series of custom timber support columns, helps to cut energy costs whilst retaining all the benefits of natural daylight and external views out to the North Sea.

The steel-framed four storey building was designed by architects Colwyn Foulkes & Partners, and was built by main contractor ISG Jackson. The stunning maritime-themed office block houses 250 people - shared between China Shipping personnel and employees from Johnson Stevens Agencies.

Situated just outside the central port complex, the 1.7-acre site provides a total of 3,458 sq metres of accommodation. It comprises a large area of curtain walling with a façade made entirely of glass and copper cladding. As a central focal feature, the reception and entranceway have been designed and constructed in the shape of a circular drum.

A series of vertical and horizontal Timber Fins, and supporting columns, from Levolux were specified by Colwyn Foulkes & Partners. Manufactured in Western Red Cedar, the timber louvres were chosen for their ability to withstand the elements and sustainable properties - particularly due to the building’s North Sea-facing position - and to further enhance its glazed external envelope.

Horizontally stacked, aerofoil-shaped Timber Fins, measuring 300mm long by 50mm wide, were mounted on the building’s southern and eastern elevations at equidistant lengths, and fixed in place using aluminium side plates.

Bespoke one-piece tapered columns, also in Western Red Cedar and measuring 10m high, were specified to provide extra load-bearing strength. Six were installed on the south façade, and four to the east, to deliver additional support for the fins and roof structure. The unique columns, a first for Levolux, were included to complement the nautical theme of the building.

A series of vertically mounted Timber Fins were also erected on the curved entranceway feature, and reinforced with a secondary curved steelwork support system that secures the Fins to the main structure.
Senior partner Nick Colwyn-Foulkes said, “The key external materials were carefully chosen for their natural look which will also enhance with age, and will also compliment and respond to the existing natural environment. The columns have a ‘mast’ like appearance that takes reference to both the local maritime industry and specifically the nature of the end-users shipping business. It is very much hoped that the design confidence of the building reflects the importance of Felixstowe as a sea port and will act as a catalyst for the further regeneration of the area.”

The Levolux Solar Shading solution will minimise heat gain for office users by preventing solar rays from hitting the glass. The louvres create comfortable internal temperatures for office workers, as well as reducing energy costs of heating and air conditioning.

Like all systems from Levolux, the Timber Fins are backed with the company’s design, manufacture and installation package.

For more information, please visit www.levolux.com.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Levolux reinvents the sound barrier

Levolux introduces the new Infiniti dB Fin System... a breakthrough in sound attenuation for new and existing buildings.

The Infiniti dB Fin System is an innovative development that challenges our current perceptions of acoustic attenuation in the built environment. Unlike traditional acoustic louvres that can be very unwieldy and unattractive, the Infiniti dB Fin System is extremely lightweight, flexible and attractive. 

When it comes to acoustic attenuation, according to indpendent tests the Infiniti dB Fin System outperforms its leading competitors by almost 90%*, even tackling the problematic low frequencies. 

Innovative Features
  • Outperforms all other single bank Acoustic Louvres by up to 90%, even at very low frequencies*
  • Ultra-low resistance to airflow ensures acoustic control is achieved with fewer louvres 
  • Integral high performance acoustic foam for exceptional, long lasting acoustic efficiency 
  • Unique patented design results in a lightweight, flexible arrangement of louvres 
  • Impressive screening and shading characteristics 
Impressive Benefits 
  • Cost-effective attenuation of external noise, preventing unwanted transmission 
  • Quick and easy to apply to new and existing buildings, with a range of attractive exterior finishes 
  • Continuous, uncompromised external aesthetic for screening unsightly structures 
  • An effective form of external shading which controls solar heat gain, thereby reducing a building's need for air conditioning 
  • Creates a comfortable environment with significantly less noise and solar heat gain

    *Tested independently in accordance with BS EN 20140-10:1992
     
    Applications
     
    The Infiniti dB Fin System is ideal for any building where there is a requirement for effective acoustic attenuation through the building envelope. This may be to control noise being  transmitted from, or received into a building.


    This may include:
    • Schools & Colleges
    • Plantroom noise attenuation
    • Buildings adjacent to rail lines or motorways
    • Buildings near airports or under flight paths
    • Buildings in inner cities
    For more information, please visit www.levolux.com or email us at info@levolux.com.