ZSW, Center for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research in Stuttgart, is one of the leading renewable energy research centers in Germany and soon they will have a new facility in which to conduct their groundbreaking work. Henning Larsen Architects just announced their win of the international competition to design the new center, which will be situated in Stuttgarter Engineering Park (STEP) and will house researchers conducting research on sustainable technologies and energy forms. The 13,000 m2 facility provides space for offices, laboratories, meeting and conference facilities.
The building is a collection of smaller units grouped together to meet the research group’s need for flexibility and ensures that over time the space can adapt to their changing programs. If needed, the design could easily be modified by adding on additional units on the periphery. Centered around a courtyard, the building is flooded with natural daylight both from the center and from skylights and atriums. The research center requested that some of their work be incorporated into the facade and that it meet and exceed the German requirements for sustainability. Building modeling and simulation has helped the design team to minimize energy use wherever possible.
“The grid structure of the research centre ensures a high degree of mobility and freedom to change and expand the building”, explains Werner Frosch, General Manager of Henning Larsen GmbH. “The building has a rational design and is organised in modules. This creates visual contact across the atriums and green oases, which the researchers can use for work or informal meetings. We look very much forward to the collaboration. The researchers of the centre hold a world-leading position in their field, sustainable technology and energy forms. The research has been integrated into the facade design.”
Images ©Henning Larsen Architects