Last October 2014, the Bombay Sapphire Co. Ltd. inaugurated its new headquarters, production facility and visitor’s centre in an 18th century paper mill in Hampshire, UK. Part of the project consisted in the design and construction of two new free form pleated glasshouses that exhibit the selected botanicals used in the production of their world renowned gins. First, the paper will describe the structural concept behind these glasshouses, consisting in slender double curved stainless steel mullions and a double curved glass skin providing bracing to the structure. The latter is made up of laminated fully tempered hot bent glass panels that were cold bent on site to achieve the intended double curvature. The paper will focus on the design, testing and installation of the structural glass panels and their connections to the stainless steel mullions. Also some fabrication issues will be discussed, such as the extensive use of scripting to automate the generation of a large amount of unique parts and the combination of computer generated data and experienced craftmanship. Finally the erection method will be described, which allowed the successful completion of both glasshouses on time for the Grand Opening Ceremony.
Carles Teixidor is Engineering Director at Bellapart since 2013 and previously Structural Engineer at the same company for 13 years. He holds MSc’s in Industrial Engineering and Mechanics of Materials, both by the University of Girona (Spain). He is especially interested in the structural design of glass connections, including the characterisation and computer simulation of glass connections, glass bonding, laminated glass interlayers, etc.