Corten is a material that is continuing to grow in popularity. A completely unique choice for rainscreen cladding, Corten is made of weathered steel panels that are purposefully designed to rust, making them a strong choice for external walls.
Forming an outer layer of rust over time after exposure to the elements means Corten panels act as protection for the steel layers underneath them, giving the building and the cladding a much longer lifespan as well as an attractive copper colour.
Corten was developed in the 1930s and originally experienced a high amount of demand because of its toughness and ability to withstand weather conditions, and these are properties that are helping to maintain its popularity today. In a time where extreme weather is becoming the norm and longevity is key, Corten is still a strong choice for architects across the country.
A high end residential development just minutes away from the Thames, Marine Wharf offers buyers and investors a range of apartments in beautiful landscaped grounds and 1,800sqm of open space. Installed by BR Hodgson, we supplied over 2200sqm of our Optima FC Secret Fix rainscreen cladding system in Corten A for this project, which was expertly designed to maximise the natural light hitting the building.
The unique feature pods on the new Charles Street building at Sheffield Hallam University used over 600sqm of our Optima TFC Through Fix Cassette rainscreen cladding, also in Corten A. Specified by Bond Bryan Architects and installed by Hobury Building Supplies, the pods are part of a new building that aims to improve the Sheffield student experience and enhance the university’s reputation that embodies a modern design and also aims to improve the surrounding area.
But the reach of Corten is extending beyond just that of cladding and architecture; across the North East in particular, we’ve also seen a number of pieces of modern art made of Corten pop up across the region, and become recognisable landmarks.
For example, a famous Corten sculpture that has touched hearts across the North East is the World War One inspired ‘Tommy’, located on Seaham harbour. Designed by local artist Ray Lonsdale to represent a solider contemplating the horror of war just moments after peace was declared, and the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that many veterans suffered after that day, the installation was meant to be present for only three months to mark the war’s centenary, but has become a permanent fixture after thousands of locals campaigned for it to stay.
Standing at 9 feet and 5 inches tall, the stunning sculpture is made entirely from Corten weathered steel; this is an ideal choice of material not only due to the rustic, distressed look created by the corrosion process, which seems to evoke the feel of war so well, but the weather resistance of Corten ensures the sculpture’s longevity in a location so close to the tumultuous North East coastline.
Corten is a unique material that has a wide range of advantages, especially when specified as a material for rainscreen cladding, and its popularity among artists and architects is surely set to continue growing in 2016.
Sotech has invested heavily in sophisticated design and manufacturing technology.
The training facility and showroom at Sotech is open to specifiers and contractors, where all of our Optima Rainscreen Systems are on display alongside the widest selection of materials and finishes, including pre and post coat aluminium, ACM, Copper, Zinc, Stainless Steel and Anodised.