My dear friend Alex Thomass of 5elf recently sent me images of his latest project, the smallest permanent pneumatic roof of the world.
‘5elf Berlin found an economic solution to roof a penthouse terrace with a pneumatical construction.The highly light-transmisive ETFE foil enables a weather protection without darkening the area which is closed on three sides.Thus the view to the sky is free and the roof with its easiness goes completely in the background.
All required technical cables are completely integrated into the statically optimized steel construction and are not visible.To save energy costs and to minimize noise of the air supply a medical membrane pump has been applied.’
I find it a pretty amazing project. The frame is almost non-existent, which makes it basically a valve floating in the air.
Check the 5elf website for a little animation of the inflation and additional text and images. You can find the project under ‘housing’ and the cushion-logo. (Always so impossible to link to these fancy flash-sites ;-)