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Mediamesh®: A shining example of sustainability

Arkitema Architects has implemented the University of Copenhagen on Amager (KUA)'s idea of creating a dynamic and open study environment. The installation of a transparent media façade system from GKD – GEBR KUFFERATH AG played a major role in this.

With six faculties, more than 200 courses and over 40,000 students, the university is one of the largest research and education institutions in Scandinavia. At the end of 1990, it was decided that the buildings, which were originally only supposed to be temporary educational facilities, would be replaced with a permanent new campus for the faculties of Humanities, Law and Technology. An architectural competition was launched and Arkitema Architects won with their new KUA design. Over three construction phases, they reconciled the required sustainability with optimum working conditions for research and teaching. Hence glazed façades not only reduce the dominance of the structure, but also allow unobstructed views of the campus and the neighboring conservation area. Solar protection systems from GKD made from Tigris stainless steel mesh, which reduce solar input without impairing luminous efficiency or the view, also play a key role here. One year after completion of new KUA, Arkitema Architects have again exploited the benefits of the metal mesh systems from GKD: a 90-square-meter transparent Mediamesh® screen on the end face of the outer block of the building combines the tried and tested open view with an immensely impressive media display panel that still lets through the same high amount of daylight. SMD lines integrated into the mesh every 3.75 centimeters vertically and every 4.25 centimeters horizontally are equipped with RGB SMDs for outdoor use. As well as brilliant color reproduction and resolution, this system also offers a power consumption of just 160 W per square meter, which is considerably lower than other systems, to meet the high aesthetic and ecological requirements placed on the system. Furthermore, the filigree design and low weight of the woven media façade were also convincing arguments for using this Mediamesh® system – currently the highest-resolution system available for outdoor applications. GKD carried out all the planning for the Mediamesh® display, including the external electronics for the existing substructure. To mount the system, the specialist relied again on the tried and tested solution with round bars and eyebolts. The University of Copenhagen commissioned a local artist to produce the photorealistic images depicting nature and scenes characteristic of the institution’s home country of Denmark.

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