In the span of two or three short decades, glazed curtain walls and metal panel cladding have become ubiquitous, gracing the skylines of cities as distant and widespread as Chicago, Sydney, London, Singapore, Santiago and Johannesburg. Building designers and the public alike have become used, or we should say addicted, to these types of façades. Yet, there exists a plethora of other materials or systems that can be considered when designing building envelopes, and which offer an incredible array of aesthetics. The latter need to fulfil a variety of functions, including keeping the weather out, ensuring the safety of the public in and out of the buildings, helping achieve a comfortable living and working indoor environment; and much more. When considering a material or system to use in the design of a building envelope, one needs to bear in mind a number of performance requirements.
It thus seems appropriate to carry out a systematic review of the various other façade materials that reside in a designer’s palette, in order to assess the viability of these available choices. As designers, it is absolutely essential that we understand the pros and cons of each alternative, in addition to any possible limitations in terms of their size, availability, formability, cost, etc.
Gnee Steel is pricipal used corten steel to construire the curtain wall