Outstanding energy balance –
police station with Plus Energy façade

New Police Station South West, Baunatal

Functionality, aesthetics and energy efficiency characterise the architectural design of the new Police Station South West in Baunatal, a town in the German state of Hesse. The style is functional and cuboid, with a high recognition value.

The energy concept is both innovative and trendsetting: solar panels integrated in the glass façade make a significant contribution to meeting the building's energy demand. The ventilated curtain wall façade was implemented with the LITHODECOR systems LITHO Glassic and LITHO Photovoltaic.

The complex consists of a narrow wing, 52 metres long and 12.5 metres wide, that runs from east to west and meets another wing, 12 m wide and 34 metres long, at right angles. The space created between these two units opens up into a courtyard. This provides access to the site and leads to the police station's main entrance. The clear and functional design is rigorously continued inside. The interior features details that reflect the essence and colours of the materials used.

Bright outlook

Photovoltaic modules were integrated in the façades of the north-south wing. The photovoltaic thin-film façade makes this part of the complex truly eye-catching. The shimmering, slightly reflective dark blue to black surfaces of the solar modules define the elegant appearance of this wing.

The benefits of thin-film technology are derived from the efficient exploitation of light, low dependency of cell efficiency on external temperatures and better diffuse-light properties. Consequently the façade fulfils several functions simultaneously and provides very good thermal insulation while also generating solar energy. This combination allows passive-house standards to be achieved.

316,000 kilowatt hours per annum

The energy-active components and photovoltaic elements of the façade, which face south as well as north-west, generate around 16,000 kilowatt hours of energy each year. Installation on three sides enables energy to be harvested all day long. Due to the police station's high energy demand, this is primarily consumed within the building and any excess is fed into the municipal power grid.

Overall the building achieves a positive energy balance. Energy consumption is around 60 per cent below the levels stipulated by the ordinance on the saving of energy (EnEV) 2009.

LITHO Glassic and LITHO Photovoltaic combined

Architects developed a customised solution in close collaboration with experts at LITHODECOR. The versatile and scalable solar panels of LITHO Photovoltaic and the multi-functional, frameless LITHO Glassic glass façade with its variable aluminium support rails and toughened safety glass (ESG) made it possible for the planners to implement their exact design.

The fixing system of LITHO Glassic and LITHO Photovoltaic with its aluminium substructure proved particularly flexible when it came to details, and its installation was also cost-effective. The visible but subtle and sophisticated fixings also allow individual modules to be replaced as necessary, without major problems.

Development project

New Police Station South West, Baunatal

General contractor

OFB Projektentwicklung GmbH, Kassel

Planning

amb. Architektur GbR, Kassel
ConstructionDallwig GmbH, Kassel
Façade1.100 m² LITHO Glassic,
260 m² LITHO Photovoltaic