At the new National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) in Tokyo, the stainless steel meshes from GKD fulfill several functions at once, such as sun protection, privacy and fall protection. They also perfectly convey the architectural concept.
As digitalization and networking increase, so too does the risk of cyberattacks. Risk detection strategies to strengthen information security are therefore becoming increasingly important. In Japan, the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) is taking on this demanding work. The NICT is the country’s only national research and development agency dedicated to information and communication technology. Their objective is to lay the groundwork for economic growth and societal security in the digital age.
The architecture of the NICT building in the Tokyo prefecture of Koganei not only picks up specifically on the interaction of security with transparency. Reowned Japanese architecture firm Nihon Sekkei incorporated areas for open exchange, as well as protected areas.
The architecture of the NICT building in Koganei, in Tokyo Prefecture, specifically addresses this coexistence of security and protection on the one hand and exchange and transparency on the other. The new building by the renowned Japanese architecture firm Nihon Sekkei was developed in such a way that there are areas for open exchange and at the same time protected areas, for example for the Cybersecurity Research Institute, which is also housed here.
Architectural fabrics from GKD also play a key part in the building’s overall character and functionalities. “As a facade, stainless steel fabrics perform not one, but three different functions ,” explains Thomas Holtkötter, Business Development Manager Asia at GKD. “The facade offers both solar protection and visual screening. It also projects beyond the actual facade as part of the balcony. It was attached to the rail structure as the bottom and to the projecting roof at the top, where it spans the structure. This way, it also performs the function of fall guard protection without compromising the open and transparent overall impressions,” comments Thomas Holtkötter.
A total of 23 panels of Omega 1520 fabric were used for the NICT, overing some 567 square meters and producing a transparent and partial second skin for the building. The horizontal weave structure and the size of the panels, each measuring up to 9.5. meters in length and up to four meters in width, lends the building facade a clear and calm overall appearance – yet without fully encapsulating the building.
Beside panels for the exterior facade, GKD also supplied stainless steel fabric for the lobby ceiling. The challenge when fitting the 16 total Omega 1530 panels, each measuring almost ten meters in length and three meters in width, was attaching them at different heights, while ensuring that they were all curved in the same radius. “This has been achieved,” Holtkötter explains, “by stretching the fabric over a specially shaped substructure and then clamping it in position. This made it possible to achieve the desired radius of the ceiling panels.” GKD’s customer for the NICT project was Japan-based facade specialst Asahi Building-Wall Co. Ltd. (AGB). The GKD Grouphas already implemented multiple projects with AGB, including a spectacular LED facade at the Zara Store in Shinjuku, Tokyo.