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Case Study

Blue Planet Denmark

Looking for quality materials and excellent durability for this seaside structure that could also create the shape they envisioned, 3XN chose Novelis FALZONAL® pre-painted aluminum for the design flexibility and exceptional functionality they required.

Located on Denmark’s Amager Island at the coast of the Øresund and near the Copenhagen Airport, the great whirlpool continues through the terrain, the pools and the sea surrounding the aquarium. It connects land and sea, drawing both the outdoors and visitors inside.

Completed in 2013, Blue Planet Denmark was designed to replace the existing Danish aquarium in Charlottenlund. First opened in 1939, the facility had reached its capacity limit and its structure was in poor condition.

The new Denmark National Aquarium meets the requirements of a global sea adventure center, housing an approximate 10,000 qm2 exhibition area that complies with all modern technical standards.

Blue Planet Denmark Specs

City: Kastrup
Country: Denmark
Products: FALZONAL in standing seam quality
Application:Roof and façade cladding
Color: Weathering clear coat

Thickness: 1.2mm
Quantity: 27,000 m2, weathering clear coating
Architect: 3XN
Installation: Fa. Kai Andersen A/S

Proven Pre-Painted Aluminum Cladding

Knowing the harsh conditions the aluminum cladding for the aquarium would face on the Danish seacoast, the architects relied on pre-painted Novelis aluminum that had proven itself for decades in extreme climates. This aluminum cladding would provide the benefits of a long life and low maintenance costs.

Novelis FALZONAL in standing seam quality offered excellent features such as the seawater- and corrosion- resistant alloy C4S. Protected with a weathering clear lacquer coat, the 1.2 mm thick facade sheet with a natural aluminum look is ideal for forming, transport and installation.

In contrast to various other metals, Novelis aluminum also poses no risk of ground water pollution. Rainwater can be collected and passed on into the aquarium without ablution. FALZONAL also can be cleaned easily without the need for harmful agents.

For the form the architects were looking for, FALZONAL also could be worked easily into the precise shape needed. More ductile than most lock-welt materials, it can be employed in a wide range of external applications.

A Single, Continuous Flow

Kai Anderson A/S, a Danish specialist in metal processing, was commissioned for the installation of Blue Planet Denmark’s roof and facades. The entire metal envelope consists of approximately 27,000 m2 of coil-coated aluminum. This was processed into 40,000 shingles identical in size and form, fixed on a substructure of omega profiles. Two hundred thousand stainless steel clips were used to affix the facade rhombs so as not to interfere with the smooth appearance. The walls and roofs form a single, continuous flow in a way that emphasizes the wavy outline of the building.

Even inside the building the “whirlpool” continues. From the round center hall of the building the different parts are ‘whirled’ in the slightly curved sequence of areas and rooms. The walls and ceilings flow into one another and form a single, continuous flow.
 The roof above the foyer is made of glass, and at the same time it is the bottom of a pool.

When designing Denmark’s national aquarium, principal of 3XN, Kim Herforth Nielsen said, “We wanted to create that adventurous feeling, and we took inspiration in the natural phenomenon of the whirlpool or maelstrom drawing you into the deep. A sculpture at the coast it unites the natural elements of water, air and earth.”

Winner of the World Architecture Festival (WAF) Display Award in 2013, Blue Planet Denmark is one of the counrty’s biggest tourist attractions, drawing approximately 700,000 visitors each year.