Smoke ventilation on a grand scale

The Hong Kong Airport Authority has awarded Colt International a natural smoke ventilation order, which the company describes as: “Probably the largest in the world in the last year.” More than one thousand Colt Kameleon automatic glazed smoke release ventilators have been integrated into the skylight system of Hong Kong International Airport’s SkyPlaza, a HK$2 billion (£130 million) office, retail and business complex.
The skylight system, which covers a vast ceiling area in the shape of gentle waves, is a distinctive feature of the building’s interior design.

Simon O’Hea, Marketing Director of Colt International, commented: “SkyPlaza is a world-class development that demanded world-class technical solutions for fire engineering. The architect, SOM Aedas JV, also demanded that the smoke control systems should not compromise the building’s aesthetics and should cause only a minimal reduction in natural daylight. Colt designed and supplied a natural smoke ventilation scheme that gives significant performance and cost advantages over the alternative mechanical system, which was in the original design specification.”

SkyPlaza, which is integrated with the main passenger terminal and express railway station, features airline check-in facilities, a new terminal for coaches, and a 38,000m² retail and entertainment centre including an IMAX theatre. With phased building, SkyPlaza will also include a World Trade Centre in one of two office towers.

Colt ventilators are fitted over 15 roof-level smoke zones in SkyPlaza. In the case of fire, make-up air is provided both by automatic sliding doors and by smoke ventilators that open in the unaffected smoke zones at high level. Control is by two pneumatic compressed air systems. To meet the client’s high specification, a series of performance tests were conducted to much more stringent levels than those usually demanded by recognised standards for smoke ventilators.

In addition to releasing smoke and heat if there’s a fire, Colt’s Kameleon ventilator allows natural daylight to enter the building, and at the same time reduces overheating problems. Kameleon’s aerodynamic efficiency ensures the best possible performance from a glazed natural ventilator. The product is available in a variety of sizes, glazing options and finishes to suit most commercial and industrial applications.

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