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We take daring and ambitious architectural designs and develop innovative solutions that achieve performance requirements within challenging constraints.
Curtain wall is often one of the largest contracts on a new construction project. At RDH, we have an intimate knowledge of the design and construction features of most curtain wall systems on the market today. We have extensive experience with both North American and overseas products and supply chains. With this knowledge we can optimize the design to provide better value and improve performance, often for little or no additional cost.
Curtain wall and façade glazing systems are among the most complicated elements of a building’s enclosure, and are one of the most common post-construction claims. Early expert involvement that continues through the design and construction phases to the performance verification stages of commissioning can avoid post-construction deficiencies. Our proactive approach and extensive experience in investigating and repairing failures help us to quickly identify high risk areas and resolve issues before they become problems.
Expert Design and System Analysis
The curtain wall industry changes rapidly. New systems are constantly being brought to market, often without adequate due diligence or performance and durability testing. New products and systems require careful evaluation prior to use in the real world. Our background in curtain wall consulting on new projects, forensic investigations, and research and development of new glazing systems gives us the experience to realistically evaluate new systems. It also gives us the experience to design and implement additional test methods when required.
Optimize Energy Performance
Improved energy performance is the new frontier for glazed building enclosures. RDH has the resources to simulate, model, and optimize fenestration systems and anchorage and interface details to achieve the energy performance requirements for the most demanding design briefs.
Design Drawings and Specifications
Extensive experience with the design and testing of curtain wall systems allows us to quickly and efficiently review drawings, specifications and submittals to manage risk, optimize the system design, and ensure that performance parameters are not compromised through poor detailing.
RDH also provides complete curtain wall design drawings and specifications for architectural teams wishing to outsource this component of the design.
Product Testing and Field Review
Independent lab testing under RDH supervision confirms the “as-built” performance of fenestration systems. Jobsite mock-up testing ensures that trades understand and can replicate the complex interfaces between fenestration products and the assemblies in which they are installed.
During construction our experienced field personnel confirm that installed products and their interfaces to surrounding construction perform as designed, through a combination of field review and field testing.
Performance Verification and Maintenance
At the end of the project it is essential to confirm performance and hand over the glazing systems with adequate operations and maintenance guidance. RDH undertakes the performance verification testing and provides comprehensive guidance on maintenance and renewals.
“I am not aware of another consultant that has RDH’s depth of Curtain-Wall and Glazing knowledge and expertise combined with the ability to verify performance through offshore site visits, mockups in their test facilitates, as well as on site during construction.”
James Sergeev Project Manager, Yuanda Canada Enterprises, Burnaby, BC
See our Case Study on the Ardea, an apartment skyscraper in Portland, for a example of RDH’s curtain wall design.