High Performance Facades Series

A definition of high performance in the context of buildings and their subassemblies is elusive and nebulous. Trending words such as “sustainable” and “technologically advanced” are often used to describe works that are often neither. This four part series defines the characteristics essential to a high-performance building envelope, the attributes required of such wall systems, and the metrics and best practices essential to qualifying a wall system as a "high-performance facade."


Download the full series

Part One: Fact or Fiction?
Part Two: Defining High Performance
Part Three: Performance Attributes – What to Consider & Measure
Part Four: Metrics & Best Practices

View in Adobe Acrobat

© 2013 enclos corp. All rights reserved.

Facade TecNotes Series

Sure, you could say that we merely clad buildings. But within each project undertaken lie the details, and Enclos’ details are amongst the most complex in the construction marketplace.

In 2009 Enclos’ Advanced Technology Studio (ATS) published two technical reports to articulate these details; one explaining the attributes of skylight glass systems in overhead applications, and the second annotating design and functional considerations for double skin wall systems. These initial ideas have since grown into an ever-expanding group of publications known as the Facade TecNotes Series, with each topic explaining one of the finer points of building skin mechanics. Since these initial two publications debuted, nearly a dozen in total have been developed to convey our industry leading facade technologies to owners, developers, architects and general contractors alike.


 Volume 1: Skylights

Glass in overhead applications brings special opportunities and equally special considerations. It is important to understand and explore the active and passive tools at the designer’s disposal to balance the often conflicting attributes of natural light and solar heat gain.

View in Flash Interactive Reader

View in Adobe Acrobat


 Volume 2: Double Skins

The cost of energy is increasing at an unprecedented rate. This factor, coupled with the potential for natural ventilation and daylight harvesting, is reducing the life cycle costs of double skin facades, making them a relevant design possibility for the construction of high-rise buildings.

View in Flash Interactive Reader

View in Adobe Acrobat

Insight Series

Insight is the publication of Enclos’ Advanced Technology Studio (ATS), which serves as a conduit to share our research and development with others throughout the a/e/c community.


Insight 01

Our debut report discusses Double Skin cavity dynamics, the impact of 3D visualization on the building facade, rapid protyping, metal panel deflection, Architecturally Exposed Structural Steel (AESS), thermal performance, environmentally responsive parametric tools, photovoltaic testing, case studies, research & development initiatives, and much, much more.

Print edition available upon request: curtainwall@enclos.com
View in Flash Interactive Reader

Download PDFs

Entire Publication

Chapter 1 | Double-Skin Façade Cavity Dynamics
Investigation into the structural performance and pressure distributions of dual wall systems.

Chapter 2 | Crystal Cladding: Detailing Faceted Glazed Geometries
The magnified fabrication and installation concerns arising from complex geometries.

Chapter 3 | Emerging Trends and Applications of Double-Skin Facades
Recent double-skin façade applications in the United States.

Chapter 4 | Double-Skin Cable-Net Facade
Case study of the Loyola University Chicago Richard J. Klarchek Information Commons.

Chapter 5 | Structurally Transparent Juxtaposition
300 New Jersey Avenue's novel glass atrium.

Chapter 6 | The Third Dimension
Integration of 3D into the design, analysis, shop, field and installation processes at Enclos.

Chapter 7 | Visualization by Animation
Communicating structural systems, services and technologies by digital illustration.

Chapter 8 | 1:1 Rapid Prototyping
Tactile communication with 3D prints.

Chapter 9 | Light-Gage Metal Panel Deflection
Analytical and experimental studies of metal panel deflection under applied pressure.

Chapter 10 | Architecturally Exposed Structural Steel (AESS)
The artistic expression of structure with steel.

Chapter 11 | Product Thermal Performance
A study of thermal transmittance and condensation resistance through simulation.

Chapter 12 | Energy Ratings and Standards
Enclos' participation in NFRC Standards.

Chapter 13 | Environmentally Responsive Parametric Tools
Integrating environmental analysis as a driver to control geometrically complex facade design.

Chapter 14 | Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) Testing
Enclos' in-house study and testing of BIPV technologies.

Chapter 15 | Double-Skin Façade Advanced Analysis
Accounting for pressure distributions of dual wall intermediate space.

Chapter 16 | Parametric Modeling with Complex Geometries
Automating part generation for complex geometries.

Chapter 17 | Automated Part Generation
Design automation to increase productivity.

Chapter 18 | Cassette Wall Assembly Mobile Facility
Minimizing time and labor for the fabrication of modular facade systems.

Chapter 19 | Robowash
Window washing through robotic technologies.

Chapter 20 | CAR-V
The Cassette Attachment & Removal Vehicle.

Chapter 21 | Acoustically Enhanced Insulated Glass
Prevailing concerns for mitigating noise pollution through the building envelope.

© 2013 enclos corp. All rights reserved.


Insight 02

The Studio's second publication examines facade retrofits, double skins, cable net walls, textile studies, field mechanization, buy american requirements, component optimization design, sealed cavity walls, blast performance of structural glazing, cassette wall systems, phantom modeling in BIM, and case studies.

Print edition available upon request: curtainwall@enclos.com
View in Flash Interactive Reader

Download PDFs

Entire Publication

Chapter 1 | Facade Retrofits: The Dilemma of Highly Glazed High-Rise Facades
The infrastructure and energy problem of aging mid-20th century buildings.

Chapter 2 | Seeing Double
Mechanics, applications and trends of double skin facades.

Chapter 3 | Sustainable Facade in Tension
A vertical cable wall case study.

Chapter 4 | Potential in Textiles: Space, Surface and Structure of Crochet
A study of building form through textiles.

Chapter 5 | Field Mechanization for Cladding Installation
Field installation techniques and strategies.

Chapter 6 | Project Spotlight: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Case study of the 2011 RIBA International Award winning project.

Chapter 7 | Buy American Requirements in a Globalized Economy
Communicating Simplifying Buy American statutes in a post-recession market.

Chapter 8 | Optimization in Component Design
Structural optimization techniques for curtainwall products.

Chapter 9 | Sealed Cavity Walls
Managing the fluid dynamics, heat-transfer and water vapor of a building facade.

Chapter 10 | Blast Performance of Structural Glazing
Analysis methods for architectural blast design.

Chapter 11 | Cassette Wall System
A study of modular façade systems and solutions.

Chapter 12 | Phantom Modeling in BIM
The interoperability of 3D models shared by an entire project team.

© 2013 enclos corp. All rights reserved.


Insight 03

In this third edition of Insight, the Studio’s multi-disciplinary teams investigate themes of digitalization, process, optimization, constructability and performance — all facets of our philosophical delivery process. New to the publication is “Dialog”, a roundtable-type discussion that pulls prevalent industry ideas into the conversation. At the Studio’s core, and in this edition of “Dialog,” is a commitment to furthering design development and experimentation.

Print edition available upon request: curtainwall@enclos.com

Download PDFs

Entire Publication


Chapter 1 | 3D Prototyping
The 21st century tool for communicating architectural concepts, form and scale.

Chapter 2 | Water Simulation Using RealFlow
How a physics-based particle software program can provide preliminary testing results for building facade performance.

Chapter 3 | Looking Beyond the Screen: Exploring the Path from Digital to Physical
Analysis of the delivery process from the third dimension to built reality.


Chapter 4 | Collaborative Engineering: An Approach to Modern Curtainwall Development
Contemporizing the collaborative process of conceptual facade design.

Chapter 5 | The Design-Assist Process: Unique Solutions through the Hybridization of Cultures and Knowledge
The complementary nature of once opposing fields of expertise.

Chapter 6 | Cost Estimating and Material Take-Offs
The data-centric side of parametric software: extracting quantities, lengths and weight.


Chapter 7 | Automation of Standard Curtainwall Calculations
Optimizing geometry, load and material for the pre-sale process.

Chapter 8 | Draining Complexity: Workflow for Drain Sizing Over Double-Curved Surfaces
An analysis of stormwater routing and buildup when paired with complex form.


Chapter 9 | What is the Future of Building Facades?
A collaborative dialog featuring the voices of leading architects, consultants, manufacturers and builders about the diverse opportunities presented by the building skin.


Chapter 10 | Curtainwall: Metaphor or Transmaterialization?
The influence of hanging textiles on modern curtainwall design.

Chapter 11 | CG Facade Installation Strategies
The pursuit of on-site efficiency through advanced visualization.

Chapter 12 | Concept to Reality: Collaborative Parametric Workflow for a Free-Form Double-Curved Cable Structure
The interoperability of 3D models shared by an entire project team.


Chapter 13 | Blast Performance of Non-Captured Structurally Glazed Insulated Glass Units
The architectural progression of blast-resistant curtainwall design.

Chapter 14 | Performative Shading Design
The co-existence of glare prevention and natural daylight.

Chapter 15 | High-Performance Facades
Navigating the minefield of definitions, performance attributes and metrics of high-performance building facades.

© 2013 enclos corp. All rights reserved.