When designing a new fabric structure, it’s important to consider a number of factors to ensure the best outcome and longest lifespan. Here we’ll cover some of the design and material considerations for most fabric structures.
Structural membranes are very durable. Physical damage can be inevitable due to the environment or uncontrollable circumstances, and the age of the membrane should be taken into consideration as this can make it more susceptible to tears. Although it’s difficult to determine how long a membrane structure will last, there are signs to watch for when determining if your structure is weakening.
As a provider of architectural fabrics, we’ve been fortunate to work on hundreds of different projects. Within the sporting world, we’ve covered buildings ranging from fully enclosed seasonal multi-sport bubbles to permanent tennis buildings and everything in between.
When planning a new facility or looking to improve an existing one, it can be a challenge to know how best to move forward. One great way is to look at what others are doing. The spring 2017 issue of GO Indoor, the official publication of the United States Indoor Sports Association (USIndoor), is full of tips on how a site visit can improve your own indoor sports facility.
Long gone are the days when the only exterior color choice of a membrane structure was white. This limiting factor did not sit well with the architectural and local building code communities. Today, there are significant advancements in technology that allow virtually any exterior color to be utilized for sports and recreation applications such as colleges and universities, as well as professional sports teams. Combined with attractive glazing walls and graphics, energy-efficient insulation packages make a tension membrane structure a solid long-term choice for sports and recreation applications.
Photovoltaics, or PV, is a method of converting solar energy into usable solar power through the use of solar panels and solar cells. Historically, glass-encased PV systems reigned supreme compared to their thin-film and flexible PV counterparts. The traditional systems are generally bulky and rigid, thus not allowing for much in terms of design flexibility. The tides have shifted however as the consumer desire to have an aesthetically pleasing way to create solar power increases, allowing the flexible PV systems to claim advantages over traditional PV.
When thinking about manufacturing facilities, one standard image comes to mind: large brick and mortar structures that are very utilitarian both inside and out. Through the years, brick and mortar has become the natural choice for manufacturing facilities across the globe. However, advancements in the fabric building industry are making tension structures just as attractive as traditional buildings, if not more so.
Technical Guide for Tensile Surface Structures- Part 1
The Architects’ Task: “The search for the natural in architecture does not restrict the possibilities; it extends them”
Classification of Materials
The coated textile industry produces a wide range of membranes, differing in strength properties. For PVC coated polyester fabrics, conventional classifications have been derived to assist architects and engineers in the selection of membrane material. Two variations of the types have been accepted-Messe Frankfurt and French Design Guide. Messe Frankfurt is more fabric content dependent (yarn linear density & yarn number, also known as fabric count). The French Design Guide reference is more directly dependent on membrane mass (g/M2) as its index. Both accomplish the goal of categorizing membrane properties for fabric selection in a structure or surface.
One of the most important functions of government is serving the public. However, it’s hard for a government agency to be responsive to disasters while waiting for traditional construction to be complete. When disaster strikes, shelter needs to be provided quickly to constituents to protect them from harm. Portable tension structures have a number of benefits, offering the perfect solution for local governments in need of emergency response facilities or in need of additional building space.
Architectural fabrics have become a more commonly used building material in the commercial space over the years, yet people are still hesitant to specify them over more traditional materials, such as brick and mortar. Below you will find four reasons why you should specify architectural fabrics for your next commercial building project.