Rainscreen cladding systems are something of a modern-day wonder product given their ability not only to transform the aesthetics of a building but also appreciably upgrade its performance, specifically in the area of thermal insulation.
Not only can such systems breath new life into tired, badly-performing buildings such as offices and residential tower blocks, they are also a highly effective method of branding buildings, given their availability in a wide range of colours and finishes.
The principles of ventilated rainscreen cladding systems are governed by BS 8200. The cladding is fixed back to the main support structure, forming a relatively lightweight, colourful weather-resistant overcoat. The benefit of this system is that any moisture, either ingress or humidity, is ventilated out of the cavity, ensuring the insulation and the inner leaf of the building are not affected by condensation.
A range of different cladding systems are available in the UK, from thin film aluminium or steel cassettes to fibre cement and glass fibre reinforced-polyester composite panels. Fixing systems also differ - designers can select from wood, aluminium or steel stud in different thicknesses.
See Steni's full report here.