Leverkusen, Germany – Three partners in the EcoCommercial Building Program (ECB) – Bayer MaterialScience, puren and AB-Polymerchemie – are supporting a research and teaching project on recycled architectural materials at Technische Universität Berlin.
In the project, 20 students designed and built a "White Pavilion" from timber, using compressed panels made of recycled polyurethane insulation scrap for the facade.
BMS, puren and AB-Polymerchemie assisted financially and with a variety of materials.
The purpose of the project is to test combinations of innovative and recycled materials for new technical and architectural applications, said a BMS statement.
The shiny 'White Pavilion' now stands at the centre of the Technology and Innovation Park in Berlin-Wedding.
The pavilion's modules consist of pinewood frames with OSB (oriented strand board) walling. Wooden structures have very strict moisture protection requirements. The students therefore chose a high-performance but sustainable building material for the pavilion. These compressed panels made of recycled PU insulation scrap, reclaimed from puren's purenit material in a special upcycling process, were used for the first time to construct the outer skin of the facade.
Purenit has very high resistance not only to moisture, mould and rot, but also to chemicals. The panels serve as insulation, effectively reducing heating energy losses. To protect against weathering, the panels were also treated with a 2 to 3-mm PU spray coating made by AB Polymerchemie.
For the students, the pavilion is an on-campus event site and café.
For TU Berlin, the building offers an opportunity to test and evaluate the innovative facade system under practical conditions. Shear and pull-out tests conducted by the students themselves at the Institute of Civil Engineering's testing centre helped to compile initial information on the load-bearing capacity of the PU compressed panels and the purenit/wood screw connections. The results will ultimately provide some indication of the durability of the new facade design.
ECB, a competence network for sustainable building initiated by Bayer MaterialScience, is contributing to research and development in sustainability of a building's life cycle. With 20 partners across Europe, the ECB offers decision-makers in the building industry comprehensive consulting services and material solutions for energy-efficient, economical and ecological building.