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E.ON hydroelectric power plant information centre, Kochel am See, Germany

e.on hydroelectric power plant information centre

Built in 1924, the hydroelectric power plant in Kochel am See was expanded to include an information centre in 2001. Each year, the centre attracts more than 100,000 visitors. In this unique landscape, the principles of hydroelectric power are explained. The highlight of the architecture of Hauschild + Boesel is a vaulted transparent roof wing, which spans the forecourt between the exhibition spaces and the restaurant.

  • It is arched by a one-ply, transparent ETFE-membrane and stands out owing to its lightness and the open view of the mountains it affords. The information centre occupies a topographically interesting site: All the buildings are integrated into the slope and the flat grass-covered roofs blend in with their surroundings. The only object that catches the eye is the triangular transparent roof structure. The support-free load-bearing structure comprises arched girders of prefabricated laminated wood with a span of 27m, which transfer the load onto the slope via the adjacent buildings. Anodised aluminium tubes with a diameter of 90mm and lengths of up to 8m extend from the girders every 1.25m, creating a secondary structure.

    A membrane, which is fixed to the underside with membrane clips to secure it against the wind, is stretched across the tubes. The edges of the membrane are fastened like swags with newly developed stainless steel clamps. The ideal combination of material and structure provides durability and low maintenance costs. The 390sqm roof is the first and largest ETFE project carried out in Germany that comprises a single assembled and mechanically installed membrane. This construction method was also used for the AWD-Arena in Hanover in 2005 and for the National Stadium in Beijing in 2008 and has become a standard building technique.

390sqm made from just one piece of ETFE-foil

Client E.ON Wasserkraft GmbH, Landshut (DE)
Architect Hauschild + Boesel, München (DE)
Date of completion 2001
Scope of seele supply

390sqm single piece ETFE-membrane-foil

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