Facade Tectonics SKINS

SKINS: December 2020

Skin Stuff: Expanding the facade materials palette

So, what is Santa bringing you this year? I want a thin, lightweight bio-organic material with the durability of glass, a programmable variable opacity from transparent to opaque, the strength of steel, the ductility of aluminum, with the thermal and acoustical properties of a 12-inch wall, and that requires very little energy in its processing and none it its recycling to virgin quality material. Oh yeah, and its cost is less than plywood on a unit basis. Did I forget anything? Probably. Santa’s packing his sleigh, so make a wish!

Read the rest from Mic >

generic facade


Episode 10: Modular Prefab & Offsite Manufacturing

Ted Kesik, U. of Toronto, joins Mic as co-host as they explore the relevance, issues and developments of modular prefabrication and offsite construction practices on the SKINS Podcast with guests Graham Finch, RDH, and Vincent Davenport, EllisDon.

Listen and subscribe.


Solid Surface Material for Facades

In this paper, presented at the 2020 FTI World Congress, SKINS contributor Chris Payne dives into the experience of using solid surface material as a unique facade shading component.

Read the paper.

Minneapolis Vikings US Bank Stadium

Case Studies

The NFL's First Translucent Roof Is a Super-Tough Monster

The ETFE roof at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis provides for a light and airy feel- even on overcast days. Accommodating snow loads was a challenge in addition to the unique roof truss design.

Read the article from Wired.

Lucas Museum

Case Studies

Famous Filmmaker’s Museum Will Feature an FRP Facade

A new museum is under construction in Los Angeles. Read about the innovative fiber-reinforced polymer facade system, which proved to be more lightweight and cost-effective than alternative materials.

Learn more.



Facades of The Future: Materials & Technologies Revolutionizing the New-Generation Façades

Facade experts from around the globe weigh in on what makes an intelligent facade. As technology has enabled new fabrication capabilities, the facade material palette has expanded.

Learn more.

Mass Timber Adobe Stock 66689303


The Rise of Mass Timber

The 2021 building code is set to allow mass timber buildings up to 18 stories high. In addition to the fire, seismic and structural performance considerations of this construction typology, learn about the art of the wood curtain wall.

Read more in Glass Magazine.

ETH Zürich doubly curved concrete roof


Double Curved Concrete Roof Formed with Steel Cable and Fabric

Block Research Group completes a self-supporting concrete roof demonstrating how a high performance structure can be achieved with low embodied emissions.

Discover more.

CO2emissions Path Nov20


Seeing the Forest From the Trees: Reducing EPD Myopia (Part 1)

Minimizing embodied carbon in the building construction industry is pivotal for reducing its impact on climate change in the coming years - particularly as the rate of construction accelerates globally. This article explores a hierarchy of decisions that can help focus design choices to where they can have the highest impact.

Dive in.

Jamaican Houses of Parliament


Government of Jamaica - New Houses of Parliament

Winner of the international design competition for the new parliament building for the Government of Jamaica incorporates the country's motto and history into their design.

Read the article.

Mic US Glass Award


FTI's Mic Patterson – US Glass 2020 Green Award Winner

Dr. Patterson is recognized as the Individual Winner of the US Glass 2020 Green Awards. The program recognizes companies, products and individuals dedicated to improving the sustainability of building practices and the built environment.

Read more.

Generic facade call for board positions


Welcoming FTI's Newest Leadership

The Facade Tectonics Institute (FTI) is pleased to announce recent changes to its Board of Directors and Special Advisory Council.

Read the announcement.

Industry Calendar

January 6-15

High-Performance Building Facades

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January 13-15


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Previously Featured


Breaking Bridges: A Look at Thermal Performance from the Glass Industry

Ellen Rogers explores the thermal bridging issue in an article for US Glass Magazine, with input from FTI’s president, Helen Sanders (Technoform), and others. Helen cites thermal performance of the facade as “the linchpin to building performance.”

Read the article.


Journal of Facade Design & Engineering - New Special Issue

This issue features European perspectives ranging from additive manufacturing through adaptive shading via shape-memory alloys to a facade-integrated thermal venetian blind with heat pipes. Free download here.

Download for free.


Thermal Bridging Guide from BC Housing

Canada is increasingly playing a leadership role in North America with respect to building performance. The Building Envelope Thermal Bridging Guide is a free online resource prepared by Morrison Hershfield and other stakeholders and made available through BC Housing.

Download the guide.


Effect of Thermal Bridging on Buildings' Energy Performance

PhD candidate Mahsa Farid Mohajer and Associate Professor Ajla Aksamija at UMass Amherst explore the impact of thermal bridging in buildings in a research paper presented during our August World Congress. Session streaming is still available to registered attendees!

Read the paper.


Episode 09: Ted Kesik on SKINS

Thought leader and professor of building science at the University of Toronto, Ted Kesik, rants on the pervasive relevance of the building skin to the pursuit of sustainability and resilience goals in buildings and urban habitat. First episode in a building science 6-pack series.

Listen and subscribe.

Are you hosting a facade-related event?

Submit your event for inclusion in our shared Industry Calendar specially curated for Facade Geeks!

Organizational Members of the Facade Tectonics Institute


Kuraray, Schüco USA


Boston Valley Terra Cotta, Permasteelisa Group, seele, TriPyramid Structures


Dow, Finishing Contractors Association, Lerch Bates, Technoform North America, Valmont Structures, Vitro Architectural Glass, WRNS Studio, W&W Glass


Antamex Industries, Heintges, Kreysler & Associates, MdeAS Architects, Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope, Roschmann Steel & Glass Constructions, Simpson Gumpertz & Heger, SOCOTEC, Inc., The Architect's Newspaper, The Miller Hull Partnership, The Ornamental Metal Institute of New York

Academics / Nonprofits

Aarhus University, Denmark, IIBEC, National Fenestration Rating Council, Rainscreen Association in North America, Universidad de Concepción, University of Utah, Western Wall & Ceiling Contractors Association