James Dyson Building, Cambridge

Funded by an £8 million donation from British inventor, designer and engineer James Dyson, this new hub for innovation and invention at the University of Cambridge’s Department of Engineering was designed by Nicholas Hare Architects.

The new James Dyson building is now home to some of the brightest engineering minds in the country undertaking post graduate research. The design reflects the ground-breaking research performed within the building and boasts several energy efficient features to provide a low-carbon footprint.

A key part of the building envelope is Senior’s SF52 curtain wall system. The individual SF52 units were fabricated by Glass & General Ltd. at their fully equipped high-tech factory in Dagenham, and then craned into place fully glazed to reduce on-site time. This enabled main contractor Morgan Sindall (with whom Senior has an established trading agreement) to meet the tight completion deadlines.

The system’s slim 52mm sight lines provided the perfect solution to creating an attractive uniform appearance for the new building as well as maximising the flow of natural light into the largely open plan interiors. The robust construction of the SF52 curtain wall system and its exceptional thermal performance was also key to its specification and meeting the requirements of reducing the building’s overall energy and life cycle costs.

The building itself has been designed to offer live data about the internal environment, temperature and strain to provide a ‘real time’ picture of how it is behaving. Speaking about the building James Dyson said “I’m hopeful that this new space for Britain’s best engineers at the University of Cambridge will catalyse great technological breakthroughs that transform how we live.”







Nicholas Hare Architects

Main Contractor:

Morgan Sindall


Glass & General Ltd.

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