Leicester, United Kingdom
REALIZATION MEMBRANE STRUCTURES
National Space Centre, Leicester, UK
N. Grimshaw & Partners, London, UK
Ove Arup & Partners, UK
The rockets stand proud behind a transparent pneumatic membrane facade. Thirty-eight ETFE cushions offer a clear view of Sputnik & Co. built according to the design by Nicholas Grimshaw & Partners. The Rocket Tower with its transparent sheath was an architectural and astronomical challenge.The open-air ambiance called for a special design that stretched the outer limits of ETFE technology. Some of the largest cushions are more than three metres high and 20 metres long and curve along a radius of some ten metres. The north face cushions can be disassembled to provide a large opening to accommodate large new exhibition items.