From humble beginnings as a small office, the 1969 commercial building has grown to become home to Kingspan Group’s head office and Innovation Centre. As Kingspan Group is committed to being a net-zero energy business by 2020, the main aim of the project was to use the company’s head office as a flagship project leading the way for the group net-zero energy global objectives.
The upgrading of the building to include the new facades has transformed the footprint of the entire building. The facade delivers all the benefits of a modern insulated panel, but it also features integrated solar PV that will generate some of the building’s electricity needs. The roof PV modules installed into the building by Kingspan Energy, continue their impressive production of circa 100,000 kWh of electricity per annum. But the harnessing of solar power doesn’t stop there. A new and improved version of Sol-Air has been installed which uses passive solar heat gain to warm air in ducts built-in to the panel, before supplying it to the underfloor heating system. The building now makes better use of natural light which floods in through special Kingspan polycarbonate roof panels, retaining the building’s internal heat. Combined with the solar PV modules and an intelligent lighting system, the building is lit consistently and efficiently. The system reduces lighting energy consumption by over 80%.
In terms of design, a ground breaking metal cassette system with spectacular shapes and features perfectly complements the building’s setting, while a metallic coating on the building changes colour according to the reflected angle of the sun.
However this project develops, one thing is for sure; Kingspan will continue to push the boundaries of building envelope and energy efficiency technologies, and to practice what they preach on their own premises.