BEIJING - Sustainable and Digital Media Technology Used to Create
New Curtainwall Façade in China
August 25, 2009
GreenPix Zero Energy Media Wall, located in Beijing and designed
by Simone Giostra & Partners Architects, applies sustainable
and digital media technology to the curtainwall of Xicui Entertainment
Complex near the site of the 2008 Olympics. Earlier this year the
Boston Society of Architects' sustainable design awards jury recognized
the project with a "Citation for innovative use of solar technology."
The project is a large-scale display made of 2,292 color LED light
points comparable to a 24,000 square foot monitor screen for dynamic
content display. Xicui's opaque box-like commercial building has
the ability to "communicate" with the surrounding environment
through its "intelligent skin" that interacts with the
building interiors and the outer public spaces using embedded, custom-designed
In addition to being one of the largest color LED displays in the
world, it is the first photovoltaic system integrated into a glass
curtainwall in China, transforming the building envelop into a self-sufficient
organic system, harvesting solar energy by day and using it to illuminate
the screen at night, mirroring a day's climatic cycle. Arup provided
lighting design and façade engineering for the project.
Supported by German manufacturers Schuco and SunWays, Giostra and
Arup developed a new technology for laminating photovoltaic cells
in a glass curtainwall and oversaw the production of the first glass
solar panels by Chinese manufacturer SunTech. The polycrystalline
photovoltaic cells are laminated within the glass of the curtainwall
and placed with changing density on the entire building's skin.
The density pattern increases the building's performance, allowing
natural light when required by the interior program, while reducing
heat gain and transforming excessive solar radiation into energy
for the media wall.
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