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Bromley By Bow Extrusion

300 m2 of Optima XTR Contour in 6063 T6 Aluminium Extrusion and 3000 m2 of Optima TFC+ in Aluminium 3103 Grade has been used in the completion of Bromley-by-Bow in East London.

Bromley-By-Bow is a visually striking array, comprised of five high rise residential blocks with community spaces and commercial areas at ground level.

Sotech’s newest system innovation – XTR Contour – was chosen as it allowed the design team to mimic the pre-cast concrete fluted panels in a consistent manner.

Bromley By Bow Extrusion

Bromley By Bow Extrusion

Bromley By Bow Extrusion

In order to form the fluted decorative areas below the windows, a new extrusion profile was developed – XTR Contour Concave. The profile of the design was a copy of the pre-cast concrete façade panels which are fluted in the same general locations.

Bromley By Bow Extrusion

Whilst systemised testing wasn’t carried out on this project, the design team invested significant time in 3D printing profiles to prove concepts prior manufacturing the physical die. This saved time and money in the overall project scheme.

FEA Simulations Bromley By Bow copy

Mohamadrez Jenaban, Technical Lead at Sotech “I have undertaken a number of simulation analyses for this project to ensure panel safety, adequate performance and stability under the given conditions. We were able to determine 1- number of stiffeners required for these panels to keep deflection below CWCT recommendation 2- the maximum fixing span to keep the stress below the material permissible stress value”. 

The main challenge on the scheme was implementing a cap to the XTR Contour profiles upon the request of the Fire Engineer. On such a shallow profile this is challenging as there is little room for any form of fabrication works. In response to this challenge, we therefore developed internal screw ports within the extruded profile. This allowed us to mechanically fix plates to the head and the base of the profile and conform the Fire Engineer’s requirements.

Bromley By Bow Extrusion

Sotech’s was able to provide key advice and guidance in the creation of the XTR profile, as well as key guidance on how to rationalise the arrangement to standardise die quantities, shape and size.

Bromley By Bow Extrusion



Jamie Smith, Commercial Manager at Sotech: “The extrusion process has some restrictions and requires knowledge of the extruding process to determine what can be manufactured through a die. Flow rates of aluminium, hollow elements and wall thickness all play a significant part in the final die composition. Sotech’s technical team are able to remove the risk to the client and advise on what is physically capable, saving time and money through failed dies.”

“The Optima XTR Contour – Concave systems gives an aesthetically pleasing visual and the powder coating enhances the system giving more definition to the fluting vs the contrasting brickwork surround. Our Optima TFC+ system, finished in Axalta Textured Powder to the recessed balconies, mixes well against the pre-cast concrete. The discrete fixing of the system is perfectly suited for this type of application when secret fixing systems by be burdensome in confined spaces.”

Reece Barnes Commercial Director at Alliance Facades said: “Bromley-by-Bow is our flagship project and largest to date, providing over 500 homes, and requiring over 3,000m2 of rainscreen cladding…We worked closely with Sotech to deliver phases 1 and 2 of the mixed-use development, selecting the Optima XTR Contour and TFC+ range respectively.

“XTR Contour was the perfect solution for the scheme as it’s extremely hardwearing and versatile, and enabled us to conform to the fire engineer’s requirements. The design team at Sotech proved themselves again and again in the way they rose to the challenges of this scheme and found innovative solutions. The project looks fantastic – well done everyone!”


About XTR Contour 

The extrusion in the XTR Contour range is formed when the aluminium alloy is pushed through a die into profiles or complex shapes of your choice. All commercial finishes may be incorporated on one elevation to create an almost limitless effect of colours and shapes.

The extrusion range is secretly fixed onto extruded aluminium support framework horizontally, vertically or diagonally. The range can provide the appearance of terracotta cladding but is much lighter, more cost effective, versatile and due to it being made from extruded aluminium 6063-T6 it is extremely hardwearing.

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About Optima TFC+

Optima TFC+ has been fire tested to BS8414-2:2015, and classified to BR135 for high rise buildings. A full range of Euroclass A1 and A2 – s1,d0 panel materials from 2mm – 4mm are available. Click here to learn more about the materials and finishes available, and to explore 3D models of the system in Sotech’s virtual showroom.

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Project details:

Project Name: Bromley by Bow
Location: London
Sector: Residential
Installer: Alliance Facades
Main Contractor: Henry Construction
Architect: Assael

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