SF52 provides smart solution for the University of Cambridge
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SF52 provides smart solution for the University of Cambridge


As the new hub for innovation and invention at the University of Cambridge’s Department of Engineering, the James Dyson Building has become the latest high-profile scheme to benefit from the slim slight lines and enhanced thermal efficiency of Senior Architectural System’s SF52 aluminium curtain walling.

The new four-storey building has been designed by Nicholas Hare Architects to reflect the ground-breaking research that is performed within and boasts a number of energy efficient features to provide a low-carbon footprint.

A key part of the building envelope is Senior’s SF52 curtain wall system that has been fabricated and installed by Glass & General Maintenance for main contractor Morgan Sindall, with whom Senior has an established trading agreement.

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.

Now firmly established as Senior’s most popular curtain wall solution, the SF52 system is available as a mullion drained system which removes the need for visible drainage slots and can also be specified as capped, silicone sealed or as a combination of the two for even greater design flexibility.

The new James Dyson Building, alongside the University’s new Dyson Centre for Engineering Design, was officially opened by Sir James Dyson in May 2016 and was part funded by donations from the James Dyson Foundation. The new centre for excellence will support research into a variety of areas including advanced materials, smart infrastructure and electric vehicles.

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