A public place for encounters, learning, and dialogue – the pharmaceutical company Novartis in Basel is dedicated to these goals with the Novartis Pavilion. The building envelope with an area of around 2,500 sqm and thus also the basis for the media facade were realised with curved BEMO standing seam sheets. An LED mesh was then clamped onto these without penetration, so that the zero-energy media facade simultaneously generates electricity as a light source.
In addition to the architecture, a special feature were the thousands of clamps that securely and permanently fasten the LED mesh, which weighs several tons, to the standing seam sheets. In addition, there was the requirement for a very matt surface so that the lighting can be shown to its best advantage.
Efficient Media Facade for more sustainability
The two-storey pavilion was designed by AMDL CIRCLE and the Milanese designer and architect Michele De Lucchi and was executed in collaboration with Blaser Architects from Basel. In addition to the mix of natural materials and technology, sustainability played a central role. For example, the entire supporting structure was made of wood, but the roof and facade were made of durable and recyclable aluminum.
Due to the shape of the building, our patented BEMO-MONRO system – the ideal solution for free-form buildings – was used for the media facade. The 550 mm wide metal sheets without strengthening ribs were formed on site with millimetre precision based on exact 3D measurement data to fit into their final place on the building. In conjunction with an adjustable substructure, unevenness in the supporting structure could be compensated. Since BEMO standing seam panels are installed without penetration, they are extremely weather-resistant, in need of low-maintenance, and durable. The BEMO-MONRO façade features 10,000 organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells equipped with more than 30,000 LED lights, which in turn act as a light source with subtle plays of light to arouse curiosity and invite discovery.
Efficient Media Facade with BEMO Expertise
Media facades are often criticized for their energy consumption, which is why the combination of double-sided LEDs and photovoltaic elements represents an innovation that earned the Novartis Pavilion the Media Architecture Biennale Award in the « Future Trends and Prototypes » category. For BEMO, the mix of a metal envelope for the building and renewable energy is nothing new – but a luminous facade is.
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