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The Elb Philharmonic Orchestra building is a piece of unique architecture. ROCKWOOL products ensure the fire safety of its roof construction and steel beams.

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ROCKWOOL Mineralwoll GmbH & Co. OHG
ROCKWOOL Strasse 37-41
DE-45966 Gladbeck

Telefon: +49 2043 408-0
Kontakt: Dipl.-Ing. Michael Kaffenberger-Küster

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HOCHTIEF Building GmbH

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Architekturbüro Herzog & de Meuron GmbH,

Fire safety for a construction of the century 

In the harbour city of Hamburg HOCHTIEF is constructing the Elb Philharmonic Orchestra building according to plans of the architectural office Herzog & de Meuron - a piece of unique architecture which suits the cosmopolitan Hanseatic city well.  A construction made of steel and glass and measuring up to 110 meters is enthroned upon the old "Kaispeicher A" (storage house build on a kay) with its red brick façade. The engineering around the 18.0000 tons of steel and 63.000 cubic meters of concrete build into the construction can clearly be regarded as trend-setting.

The roof tightened above floor 26 weights around 700 tons and with its swinging curves definitely shapes the appearance of the Elb Philarmonic Orchetra building. "The lines of the trapezoidal sheeting roof naturally led to extraordinary forms also affecting the steel beams lying below", says Dipl.-Ing. Silvia Kreuzinger, construction manager at KAEFER Construction GmbH that is entrusted with fire protection works by HOCHTIEF.   Approx. 6.000 sqm roofage, 5.000 sqm supporting structure and 1.200 running meters of connecting flanges were facing installation. With regard to fire protection curved forms, many connections and intersections needed to be covered with F 90 or F 120.

Cladding of the ceiling according to ROCKWOOL special report

The steel trapezoidal ceilings of the main roof are placed upon the top flange/belt of the steel beams that measure up to one meter. Looking at the F 90/ F 120 requirements of the entire roof construction, the respectively higher heat input of the trapezoidal roof needed to be taken into consideration, too. Two layers of stone wool provide for the roofs' required fire protection. For the cladding the responsible persons relied on ,Conlit Steelprotect Boards' from ROCKWOOL. Onto the first layer of this 35 mm thick and pressure resistant fire protection boards a second layer of likewise 35 mm was placed, however, in the aluminum-covered version. With the reinforced aluminium foil of the "Conlit Steelprotect Boards Alu" the necessary diffusion density towards the trapezoidal profiles could be secured easily. According to a special report, stone wool noggins of 10 cm were installed at first as base for the fire protection boards. The maximum distance between upper flange and lower flange thereby was 1.20 m.  The stone wool noggins were fixed to the steel beams and the subsequently installed "Conlit Steelprotect Boards Alu" by using "Conlit Fix" glue. Additionally they were fixed with nails and clips.  At the end all joints were masked with an aluminium strip. The advantage of both kinds of boards is that thanks to the low weight the installation is comparably easy, especially overhead. The boards were fixed with special screws in the tie bars.

Fire protection boards made of stone wool fit geometrics

Another advantage of the 25mm thick "Conlit Steelprotect Boards" could be seen when covering the steel beams and steel columns in F 90-A: they even fit to curved building elements in a flexible and exact manner. Moreover, they fit to difficult positions, such as small flange areas because by using a knife they can manually be adjusted very precisely. Due to the exact planning of the installer, the construction site was almost free of waste. In his garage he already cut most of the cladding to size before delivering them to the construction site.

Today the technical area is the only place within the entire Elb Philharmonic Orchestra building where the fire protection covers are still visible. As they are shining through the glass façade, and can be recognized from the outside it was decided to add a finish to the "Conlit Steelprotect Boards" in black colour.  

"By applying the black paint - the layer is thinner than 0.5 mm - the fire safty properties of the boards remain unchanged. It is a purely visual change with the effect that the insulated structure cannot be seen from the street", explains Dipl.-Ing. Michael Kaffenberger-Küster, who oversaw the project "Elb Philharmonic Orchestra building" as  Technical Consultant of Deutsche ROCKWOOL.