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EarthCam Campus Glows with Aluminum Foam Façade

© by Spacesmith

EarthCam, a global leader in providing webcam content, technology and services, officially opened its new 10-acre headquarters in Northern New Jersey. The LEED-certified workspace housing the company’s technology and manufacturing divisions features a unique façade made of translucent aluminum foam that creates a visually striking and dramatically modern look with a high-tech glow.

“We wanted the building’s façade, one of the first things a visitor sees, to reflect our company values,” said Bill Sharp, senior vice president at EarthCam. “At the top of the list are innovation and transparency.”

Steven M. Davis of Davis Brody Bond designed the structure in collaboration with Spacesmith, transforming the old factory site into a vibrant campus aimed at boosting employee health and collaboration. The project involved recladding of the existing 26,000 sq f cement block building with aluminum foam panels, as well as the addition of a new entryway and connecting atrium. The translucent panels are backlit using 3,500 custom-manufactured LED lights to expose the organic nature of the aluminum. The façade also acts as a sunshield for reduced energy consumption during the day, and floor to ceiling windows and skylights provide natural light to the open, organic work spaces throughout the building..

Close up of aluminum foam from Alusion.
Close up of aluminum foam from Alusion.

Manufactured by Alusion, the lightweight foam panels are made from recycled materials and are produced by injecting air into molten aluminum. A fine dispersion of ceramic particles within the melt stabilizes the air bubbles, which remain in the metal as it solidifies, producing a strong, porous texture. A continuous casting production method is used to produce the foam, one panel at a time. The foam panels were installed on a subframe that was mechanically attached to the existing block wall.

The textured aluminum panels frame the new entry pavilion with its three-story glass curtain wall atrium. The entry houses a 25-foot-tall LED video wall that showcases live EarthCam feeds from around the world.

The EarthCam campus received LED certification through the use of building materials made from recycled content and reclaimed components, as well as through efficient design, including the integration of equipment that reduces energy consumption within the facility. Building with these objectives in mind, the facility highlights EarthCam’s commitment to corporate sustainability.

The entire construction process for the campus was documented by over 40 different time-lapse cameras from the groundbreaking ceremony to the grand opening party, with highlights appearing in its 4K construction time-lapse movie.

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