Project Description

The new Royal Papworth Hospital is set to achieve the highest energy efficiency, sustainability rating yet awarded to a UK hospital, helped in part through Gilberts Blackpool.

Designed by HOK, and built by Skanska, the new building on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus has an EPC target rating of B, and is constructed to allow reconfiguration of the building from the initial 3,065m2 up to 10,960m2, to ensure its fitness for purpose in the long term.

Gilberts’ ability to work closely with the design team and respond quickly to queries through its active pre-order service, enabled a timely solution to the challenges of meeting the key design criteria.

As a result, more than 2,300m2 of Gilberts’ high performance louvres have been incorporated into the external façade, to ensure appropriate weather protection and ventilation of the plant needed to service the building, which is predominantly served by a ground source heat pump.

The care criteria meant premium quality air conditioning has been deemed essential. The air conditioning plant is therefore located on the second floor, servicing medical facilities on the basement, ground and first floor, with additional plant on the roof serving the third, fourth and fifth floors.

The second floor plant room to the main external façade has been installed with almost 260m2 of Gilberts’ WPK75 kit louvre system, providing Class B weather performance via 37 panels of various sizes, for air intake. The external façade on the atrium side has a further 560+m2 of Gilberts’ WGK75 louvre system for air discharge, in two continuous, sweeping panels, to integrate into the elliptical shape of the building, offering Class C weather protection, reflecting its more sheltered location.

To the external plant on the main roof of the hospital building, some 1,330m2 of inverted ‘hit and miss’ WGK louvres were installed to provide an aesthetically-pleasing and cost-effective means of visual screening.

Beyond the main hospital, Gilberts also provided WHK75 high weather performance louvres and doors to provide active and blanking panels for the façade of the Energy Centre, adjacent to the hospital to enclose the generator plant. On the roof f the Energy Centre, a 3m high perimeter screen of Gilberts WGK louvres is used to provide visual screening of the plant, providing synergy with that used on the main roof of the hospital.

Tom Leung, HOK project architect explained, “We worked closely with the main contractor and Gilberts as sub contractor to develop solutions that balanced the physical performance, aesthetic and commercial challenges.”

Added Gilberts louvre sales manager John Hanger, “Gilberts has a respected technical and R&D team, who provided an active pre-order service giving prompt advice and costings, to facilitate an acceptable solution.”

Gilberts WPK75 and WGK75 Series are specifically developed for site assembly, to facilitate integration into modern structural interfaces and changes to the building profile. WPK75 delivers medium-high efficiency, whereas WGK75 provided standard weather screening.

The WHK75 is designed for high performance situations, with the capability of being specified to form panels and doors, with or without acoustic attenuation.

Gilberts’ air movement solutions incorporate grilles, louvres, and diffusers for natural, hybrid and mechanical ventilation. Founded 55 years ago, Gilberts Blackpool is Britain’s leading independent air movement specialist, and is unique in its ability to develop components, be it ‘mainstream’ or bespoke- entirely in-house, from initial design through tooling, production, testing and supply, at its 8825m2 manufacturing facility. Its state of the art test centre, designed and built in-house, is one of the most technically advanced in the country.