Floating Roof Design: A Clever Structural Design Technique
Modern architectural design often seems to defy the laws of physics, using cantilevering building structures and floating elements of constriction seemingly unsupported. Architectural Glass is often used to help accentuate the appearance of ‘floating’ in architectural designs by creating a transparent structure below.
These structural elements do not completely ‘float’, instead they employ clever structural design techniques to cantilever or offset any supporting elements required.
Using Slim Sliding Glass Doors:
A popular architectural glazing option for a floating roof design is to use sliding doors that move away from a corner, leaving no support or visible structure in its wake, giving the appearance that the roof above is ‘floating’.
This recent project in Richmond used this architectural glazing option to create their floating roof, which was a key aspect of their architectural design.
Here minimal windows sliding glass doors from IQ Glass were used as glazed walls on two sides of the rear extension. They slide away from the corner connection leaving no supporting structure or framing in their path, creating the appearance that the roof above is simply floating on top of the glass.
These types of slim framed sliding glass doors have a very minimal live load deflection tolerance (+/-5mm) so proper structural calculations for the cantilevered roof design need to be undertaken.
Using Frameless Structural Glass:
Another option for creating a floating roof design is to use frameless structural glazing wrapped around the corner, below the solid roof structure. Here the structural glass can either cover any corner supporting posts or sit below a cantilevered roof design.
Fixed glazing can take a slightly larger live load deflection than slim framed sliding glass doors which is why a fixed corner was used on this impressive cantilevered floating roof design on a Cotswolds house.
You can see more examples of ‘Floating Roof’ Designs here at our Pinterest board.