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Elevation Awards Spotlight: Amazon Spheres

Monday, June 4, 2018

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With just a few weeks left to submit an entry for Durability + Design’s second annual Elevation Awards, we will be counting down to the deadline (June 15) with featured selections of this year’s nominees, giving readers a glimpse of the competition. Below is a selected nominee in the “Exteriors, Commercial + Public Buildings” category.

Project: Amazon Spheres

Consultancy firm TNW Inc. and architectural firm NBBJ, both of Seattle, teamed up with Tnemec Company Inc. for the exterior of Amazon’s green office spheres, a trio of glass-enclosed buildings with structural steel shells.

Images: Tnemec Company Inc.

Consultancy firm TNW Inc. and architectural firm NBBJ, both of Seattle, teamed up with Tnemec Company Inc. for the exterior of Amazon’s green office spheres, a trio of glass-enclosed buildings with structural steel shells.

“The interior workspace surrounds employees with a waterfall, trees and thousands of plants from around the world,” said TNW’s Scott McConnell.

“As soon as the building is closed down at night, the humidity is increased to 85 percent, then it drops down to 60 percent during business hours. That is why they needed a coating system with long-lasting corrosion protection.”

The project’s original specification called for a urethane topcoat, but was changed to a fluoropolymer coating system, which McConnell said turned out to be the right call because of the extreme environment inside.

The fabricator spray-applied a prime coat of Series 90-97 Tneme-Zinc, a zinc-rich aromatic urethane coating, over steel that was prepared in accordance with SSPC-SP 10/NACE 2 Near-White Metal Blast Cleaning.

After the steel was shipped to the site and assembled, the field applicator power-tool cleaned the weld seams and coated them with Series 94-H2O Hydro-Zinc, a single-component aromatic urethane coating containing less than 100 grams per liter of VOCs. Applicators completed the coating system with an intermediate coat of Series 27WB Typoxy, a water-based epoxy with exceptional durability and corrosion resistance, and the finish coat of Series 1072V Fluoronar, a low-VOC, fluoropolymer coating with outstanding color and gloss retention. Coatings were roller-applied in the field.

The project’s original specification called for a urethane topcoat, but was changed to a fluoropolymer coating system, which McConnell said turned out to be the right call because of the extreme environment inside.

This same system was used on the exterior metal of Amazon’s nearby office building, as well as on other sculptures in the plaza; it's all part of a $4 billion headquarters complex for the online retail giant.

More Information

If you or someone you know completed an outstanding project between March 2, 2017, and March 1, 2018, be sure to get your nominations in here.

   

Tagged categories: Awards and honors; Coatings Technology; D+D Elevation Awards; Exterior Wall Coatings; Fluoropolymer; North America; Tnemec

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