An All-In-One Lightweight Building Envelope System That Is Revolutionizing the Construction Industry
Construction as an industry is often slow to change, choosing tried-and-true methods to avoid risk. Nevertheless, change is often necessary to remain competitive, especially given recent labor, inflationary and environmental pressures.
An efficient and multi-purpose building envelope that can quickly enclose a structure is becoming an attractive alternative to traditional building systems. Infinite Facade™ is a high-performing prefabricated building envelope system, offering design-build teams integrated glazing options and aesthetic flexibility while successfully meeting budget and expediting construction schedules.
As owners seek to create more sustainable structures that minimize embodied carbon, they are looking at the building envelope impact and attracted to Infinite Facade from Wells' ability to meet certification goals, chiefly by:
- Smart materials usage – high R-value HFO-based insulation layer and using 40% less cement
- Better harnessing heating energy compared to typical site-built construction assemblies
- Reducing Global Warming Potential (GWP) by over 60% percent compared to traditional curtain wall systems1
What goes into an all-in-one building envelope system?
As projects enter the concept and early design development (DD), discussions focus on design intent and system optimization to achieve the desired result. The Wells preconstruction team works alongside design teams to translate the design into an efficient plan for articulation.
What is most noticeable, perhaps, is that Infinite Facade panels are significantly lighter. While traditional precast cladding typically requires around 7” of concrete, Infinite Facade requires only 2 ½”. Additionally, the product contains a lightweight tube-steel frame and incorporates a high-performance spray foam insulation in lieu of rigid board insulation.
It can be manufactured in a variety of architectural finishes creatively using mixes, finishes, textures and formliners to create 3D shapes and building articulation, cast-in materials such as thin-brick, stone, and terra cotta, and pre-applied materials such as metal panel.
As part of the integrated Infinite Facade system, windows are pre-installed before they ship to the jobsite. That makes it ideal for multi-story structures. It allows for floor height flexibility and a much larger window-to-wall ratio, providing multiple glazing options, uniquely designed to achieve a project’s daylighting needs.
The benefits of prefabrication.
Of course, Infinite Facade from Wells comes with the same benefits common to all prefabricated products – accelerated schedule, single-source scope, reduced on-site trades and lower risk. There are also significantly enhanced quality controls since the entirety of the product is created at an offsite-controlled manufacturing environment.
It’s breaking down other barriers as well. By being fully prefabricated and lightweight, Infinite Facade panels can be shipped to greater distances. To date, this product has shipped as far as 500 miles from the manufacturing facility.
The future of building envelope design and construction.
Ultimately, this all-in-one solution is helping designers realize their visions with hundreds of design options, allowing owners and developers to get buildings up faster, with fewer on-site resources and providing a single-source partner to reduce risks. The final solution is a high-performing, energy efficient and resilient building envelope that is changing the way we design and construct.