Tough and virtually unbreakable stadium walls that are transparent and curvilinear

Walls of Aviva Stadium, Dublin, for rugby and football are now transparent. The stadium’s transparent, curvilinear walls are constructed from SABIC Innovative Plastics’ tough and virtually unbreakable Lexan* Exell D polycarbonate (PC) sheet, which adds incredible elegance, high performance and environmental benefits. Recognizing the strategic contribution of Lexan sheet technology to the stadium, the European Polycarbonate Sheet Extruders (EPSE) honored SABIC Innovative Plastics with its 2009 Best Project and Innovation Award. The versatile material offers huge advantages to architects of public buildings, including exceptional design freedom, high strength and impact resistance, and light weight to enable large, unbroken expanses. But most important, the transparency of Lexan sheet enables these structures to reflect the colors of the sky and different patterns of light, creating an ever-changing and beautiful façade. The building utilizes cold line bended Lexan Exell D sheet in the sweeping walls. Lexan sheet louvers help support the air ventilation requirement of the stadium. The material has a polished finish on the exterior and incorporates a proprietary ultraviolet (UV) protection layer and absorbs harmful UV radiation. Lexan Exell D sheet is an important contributor to the green initiatives at Aviva. By allowing daylight to stream into the stadium, the material helps to reduce energy usage; sensors keep artificial lighting turned off when there is sufficient natural light. Weighing only half as much as glass, Lexan Exell D sheet reduces the amount of material required for structural supports. The polycarbonate sheet also provides high impact strength (250 times that of glass) and flame retardance (compliant with the European fire standard EN 13501-1) for safety, and complies with glazing security impact resistance according to Pr EN 356. Other key properties are dimensional stability; ease of handling and installation; and resistance to yellowing, graffiti and breakage.
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