Sky Plaza, Hong Kong Airport

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) airport terminal, 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.

Kameleon automatic glazed smoke release ventilators Kameleon automatic glazed smoke release ventilators Kameleon automatic glazed smoke release ventilators

The architect, SOM Aedas JV, demanded that the smoke control systems should not compromise the building's aesthetics and should provide the maximum of natural daylight, whilst the Consultant Engineers, Arup Fire, demanded that the system should effectively provide the necessary smoke release in a fire emergency. Colt designed and supplied a natural smoke ventilation scheme which gives significant performance and cost advantages over an alternative mechanical system which was in the original design specification.

SkyPlaza, which is integrated with Hong KongInternationalAirport's main passenger terminal and express railway station, features airline check-in facilities, a new terminal for coaches, and a 38,000 square-metre 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 Kameleon natural ventilators are fitted over 15 roof-level smoke zones in SkyPlaza. In the case of fire, the roof vents open to release smoke and hot gases whilst make up air is provided by automatic sliding doors and by smoke ventilators that open in the unaffected smoke zones. Control is by two pneumatic compressed air systems comprising air receivers with a capacity of 12,000 litres and compressed air distribution ring-main system. The system's operation is linked to the building fire alarm, with BMS monitoring.

Colt manufactured and assembled all the ventilators in China and Hong Kong under strict quality assurance procedures and provided the full scheme design and application engineering.

In addition to releasing smoke and heat if there's a fire, the Kameleon ventilators allow natural daylight to enter the building and also provide natural ventilation.

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. These included structural adequacy tests under BD PNAP 106 and ASTM E330, relating to water-tightness and air-tightness. The structural safety test was carried out under a loading of +4.80kPa and -5.25kPa and all tests were successful.