Before we can talk about kinetic facades, it is important to start by understanding what is kinetic architecture. Simply put, kinetic architecture is the approach to constructing buildings where are part of the structure can move without deforming the rest f the structure. This moment is made possible through a variety of mechanisms such as hinges and sliding panels. Kinetic architecture may sound modern, but it has been around for a long time. For example, many castles across the world featured build with drawbridges that could be moved away from their position. This was done for defensive reasons as they were usually built over moats that surrounded the castle.
We have come a long way since the days of the draw bridges and as a result, the advancement of kinetic architecture has gone hand in hand with advances in electronics, robotics and computer technology. Today, there are numerous sports stadiums that have retractable roofs which can be closed in case of bad weather. This enables the stadium to be an all-weather stadium.
Kinetic architecture is able to improve the functionality of a structure by making it more in tune with its environment. A good example is the use of retractable bridges across ports, which enables the passage of ships without interfering with the bridge users. In that sense, the bridge still allows the port to function with all kinds of ships docking while at the same time, enables motorists and other road users to still use the bridge. If it was a static bridge, one of the two functions would have been lost.
Kinetic facades follow the same principle as the different kinetic components that we have talked about. The movement of these facades can serve different functions such as allowing air circulation into the building, preventing sun rays from penetrating into the structure and other functions. Rather than have a static facade that is permanently in place, the kinetic facade is able to transform the look of a building while at the same time offering the same functionality that you can expect from a kinetic facade.
When it comes to kinetic facades, there are several ways in which these structures operate. The first is through a manual mechanism where the movement activated manually. With most modern structures however, the kinetic function can be activated automatically. For example, sears placed on a facade can detect UV ray levels and determine that the sun rays are getting into the building. The facade then automatically lowers and closes, blocking sunlight from getting into the structure. This in turn cools the building and reduces the need for air conditioning which is very energy intensive. Other forms of kinetic facades are designed to detect rainfall and also close, which offers protection to anyone beneath them. When the sun is shining however, the facade remains ain place and this means people can enjoy the warmth of the sun.
If you are not sure if you need a kinetic facade, it is a great idea to talk to experts about what you have in mind. It is good to be clear about why you need the kinetic element in your facade; is it for energy saving purposes or for aesthetic value.
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