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Materials
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The metal, wood, and plastic materials featured this month are not radical introductions to the architectural market, but rather, dependable options enhanced in ways that make them more interesting to work with, from new uses for bamboo to plastic roofing panels that save energy. Rita Catinella Orrell

 
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Examples of Dye Sublimation applications include decorative Corian tabletops with prints of M.C. Escher’s famous works Drawing Hands (top left) and Rind (top right). A colorful Pop Art graphic (above) showcases how the process can be used to create an attention-grabbing feature wall.

Dye sublimation process “tattoos” solid surfacing
DuPont Corian continues to push the boundaries of solid surfacing, and in turn, remains a vital supplier to the architectural and design community. The latest patent-pending technology developed for the material is Dye Sublimation in Corian, manufactured exclusively by R.D. Wing Company of Kirkland, Washington. Dye Sublimation is a new three-step heating transfer and compression process that allows any image or graphic to be transferred onto Corian. The end result is an image that, like a tattoo on skin, actually becomes a part of the Corian surface. With the aid of computer software, special water-based inks and low-absorption paper are laid out on a sheet of Corian. A heating device is put in contact with the printed paper and Corian, both of which are heated on a vacuum table to ensure the inks vaporize and permeate into the Corian matrix. Upon cooling, Corian reverts to its nonporous state, permanently transferring the image, photograph, logo, or pattern onto the surface of the material. The printed Corian can then be repolished and thermoformed in the same way as unprinted Corian. Depending on the image provided, the image transfer can be produced as small as a coin or up to 30'' x 40'' without seaming or panelizing. A rapid cycle time allows fast turnaround for proofing, sampling, and the production of signs, logos, tiles, and other design elements. R.D. Wing Company, Kirkland, Wash. www.blimages.com [ Reader Service September 2006 # 201 ]

 

 

Safety mesh system
For the atrium of the 300,000-square-foot Kendall Square Biotech Laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a Cambridge Architectural Security & Safety mesh system was specified to provide fall protection using panels of metal fabric within railings. The metal fabric was used in combination with wood for lateral stability. The lab’s interior materials intentionally mimic those specified on the exterior. Cambridge Architectural, Cambridge, Md. www.cambridgearchitectural.com [ Reader Service September 2006 # 202 ]

 

 

Better behaving beams
iLevel Trus Joist Commercial, formerly Trus Joist, has introduced a new family of commercial framing products to the market. The TimberStrand LSL beam (above) allows for the drilling of multiple holes and has capacity for larger holes up to 45¼8''. Parallam PSL beams and columns (right) reach up to 60' long. Thick section beams and headers eliminate field assembly and allow connections using common hardware. iLevel Trus Joist Commercial, Federal Way, Wash. www.iLevel.com [ Reader Service September 2006 # 203 ]

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