Luxembourg City has partnered with the local energy network operator Creos to create a landmark powerplant to provide energy to its latest suburb. Known as the E.C.C.O. Power Station, the site consists of two technical buildings which house a high-voltage substation and a boiler room, and two high chimney towers which provide ventilation for the equipment.

Utilising heat from a nearby incinerator, the boiler room will meet around 85 percent of the new district’s heating needs. The substation supplies electricity to the southern districts of Luxembourg City including the new Ban de Gasperich.

The shape and exterior appearance of the building were designed by Beng Architectes Associes in collaboration with Russian artist Aleksander Konstantinov. The load-bearing structure of the slabs, walls, roofs, and chimneys is formed from reinforced concrete dressed in metal cladding.

One of the major constraints for the design team was the height of the chimneys. It was critical to ensure these monolithic structures remained a part of the whole to reinforce the landmark role the building plays in the surrounding community. This problem was solved through the selection of Sinea® pre-painted steel from ArcelorMittal Arval.

The design team chose selected a limited palette of eight colours from the Sinea® range. Three light colours and five dark colours were selected. The colours were divided into three groups which were utilised to clad either the roof, facades, or chimneys. Each colour group was arranged within each area according to a ‘hidden’ pattern designed by Aleksander Konstantinov. In total, over 4,500 square metres of cladding was applied to the structure, making it an enormous artwork in pre-painted metal.

Three of the dark colours were formed into Ondatherm roofing panels, which were applied to the roofs of the structure. Ondatherm sandwich panels are made of high-performance insulation material which is foamed between two sheets of steel. While the exterior sheet is made from Sinea®, the inner sheet forms the ceiling of the building.

All five dark shades were used on the exterior of Baine® cladding panels and applied to the walls of the buildings. Baine® cladding panels finished in the three lighter colours were applied to the chimneys. Baine® panels have a corrugated surface which adds visual interest when used to clad large areas.

The Sinea® pre-painted steel features a multi-layer, 85-micron thick paint system which can be guaranteed in cladding applications for up to 40 years. Each layer of the coating is chemically different, but they work together to make Sinea® one of the most weather-resistant coatings available. Sinea® also offers exceptional resistance to ultraviolet rays (RUV4) to ensure the colours will remain vibrant for decades to come.

Thanks to the long-term durability of the pre-painted metal, the E.C.C.O. Power Station will continue to provide energy and warmth to its neighbours for decades to come. The facility will also serve as a cutting-edge landmark for the newest district of Luxembourg City.

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