In August 2007, the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Swiss Institute of Technology Lausanne), Lausanne, Switzerland, began building the Rolex Learning Center adjacent to its campus. The building will provide space for 700 students and teachers, house a library and catering facilities, and host exhibitions and conferences. Designed by well-known Japanese architects Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, it is slated for completion in 2010.
Viewed aerially, the building appears similar to a slice of Swiss cheese; it features many internal courtyards and a 217,850-square-foot contoured low-slope roof system, which was installed by Pilatus Flachdach AG, Wollerau, Switzerland. The contoured low-slope roof presented a challenge for the roofing contractor because there virtually is no straight roof termination.
The company installed thermal insulation consisting of 120- and 100-mm-thick (4.7- and 3.9-inch-thick, respectively) Flumroc semi-rigid acoustic mineral wool over a vapor retarder and mechanically attached a Sika Sarnafil 1.8-mm-thick (72-mil-thick) reinforced PVC roof membrane. Additionally, the company welded roof gutters and connected 3,000 lighting protection plates and dozens of skylights to the roof using plastic sealing strips.
LEISTER Process Technologies' welding equipment was used for the project. Pilatus Flachdach used VARIMAT V on surface areas for overlap welding of the 1.8-mm-thick (72-mil-thick) plastic strips; UNIROOF E for rounded zones near the roof's edge; TRIAC DRIVE PID for guttering, edging, and around lighting protection plates and covers of the rails and skylights; and TRIAC PID and HOT JET S for awkward structural details.