Foldable and movable roof structures for urban spaces
Over the last 30 years, SL Rasch has been continuously refining the traditional umbrella. Today, thanks to unique scientific methods and state-of-the-art materials, it is a superlative example of lightweight architecture. Umbrellas of any size can be used as a modular system and arranged to create convertible roof structures that provide protection from the sun and rain. Umbrella structures are also extremely flexible. They can be adapted to any setting and improve climate comfort both inside buildings and in urban spaces. Because the convertible structures give a place a temporary new face, they play a special role in shaping its identity.
The special and lightweight structures designed by SL Rasch go far beyond conventional construction techniques. They call for a high degree of technological innovation and the use of the latest hi-tech materials. We use supercomputers to simulate the complex interplay between the various requirements a structure has to meet – including air conditioning, lightning protection, fire safety and smoke extraction. The resulting model is used for verification. In order to facilitate the development of such tools and methods, the architecture, engineering, and research and development departments at SL Rasch work in close collaboration with one another, as well as with the production and implementation teams. This holistic design approach covers all planning processes and leads to the continuous optimisation of these exceptional structures.
The roof of the private club house in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, is level with the ground. One large and several small skylights supply the interior with natural daylight. Convertible textile roofs were installed over the skylights and can be deployed as required, either via radio remote control or with an iPad.