roof structure


glass elements


clerestory façade


visual mock-up

a special steel-and-glass roof for the albert einstein learning and research center

SBIBAE's inception resulted from the commitment of the Jewish community to offer Brazil a quality reference in the hospital segment. It started operating in the 1960s, with some health care departments and a volunteer team. In 1971, Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein opened its doors. The vision of a health system integrated to social responsibility actions, teaching and research turned Einstein into one of the most important healthcare organizations in Latin America. The main activities of the building – auditorium, cafeteria, classrooms and labs – are focused around a stepped landscaped courtyard, which creates opportunities for collaboration and discovery. The atrium’s vaulting glass roof features an inventive shading system that evokes the feeling of gathering under a leafy tree. The 3,786sqm steel and glass skylight includes a sophisticated system of layered components which integrate structure, shading and acoustics.

seele was commissioned for the structural design, fabrication and installation supervision of the skylight as well as the 650sqm clerestory.


  • The roof structure itself consists of 1,854 geometrically different glass elements with a dotted frit pattern, as well as a solar protection coating. In order to provide a delicate filtering of light and optimal acoustic conditions, micro-perforated clear membrane panels also printed with a dotted pattern are mounted in a separate layer underneath the glazing.

    In October 2018, the visual mock-up was accepted by the architects. Fabrication is expected to begin in March 2019.

    Renderings: © Safdie Architects
    3D image and mock-up: © seele

An inventive shading system

The skylight design poses a special challenge to optimally balance three countervailing factors: to provide enough ample daylight for the vegetation to thrive, to regulate heat gain and glare for comfort, and to provide shading by delicately filtering bright sunlight. To maximize the daylight needs of the extensive vegetation, a clear neutral low-iron glass with high visual light transmittance is used. To regulate the solar heat gain, an efficient solar coating is included on the glass. In addition the glass has minimal reflectivity to avoid disturbing exterior reflections during the day towards the adjacent neighborhood.

In October 2018, seele built a visual mock-up with 9 different panels with various permutations of frit densities and colors to test and simulate various effects across the skylight. © seele
To regulate sunlight and provide shading, a dotted frit will be printed on the glass in a gradient pattern which becomes increasingly dense towards the edge and less dense towards the center directly above the main planted garden. © seele


Client Sociedade Beneficente Israelita Brasileira Albert Einstein (SBIBAE)
Architect Safdie Associates
Engineer Thornton Tomasetti
Date of completion 2020
Scope of seele supply
  • 3,786sqm steel-and-glass structure, consisting of approx. 1,854 varying roof elements
    • IGU printed with dotted frit and heat and sun protective coating on level 2
    • acoustic panels made of micro-perforated, membranes printed with a dotted pattern, installed underneath the glazing
  • 650sqm clerestory-façade
    • 140 different clerestory elements
    • double laminated safety glass (VSG) made of 2 x 10mm annealed glass (TVG)
  • 20sqm visual mock-up in Gersthofen