Bilco supplies smoke ventilators to Corpus Christi college

Leading access doors and vents manufacturer Bilco has completed delivery of three smoke ventilators for the £7 million refurbishment of the Taylor Library at Corpus Christi College in Cambridge.

Corpus Christi College is one of the ancient colleges of the University of Cambridge. A stately Victorian building at the northwest corner of the college, formerly a bank, will now house the transformed three-storey, state-of-the-art library for the 400 students and fellows of the college.

Haymills was the main contractor for the development and the architect was Wright & Wright.

Bilco supplied three SS-20 REM steel smoke vents measuring 875 mm by 760 mm, which were hinged on the shorter side and supplied with a fully enclosed curb. The vents were specially calibrated to operate on the roof - which has a 38 degree pitch - and were then copper clad by T R Freedman to blend into the building.

The vents each utilise two 24 volt DC cylindrical piston actuators for positive, controlled operation to ensure rapid dispersal of smoke and noxious fumes.

The smoke vents have been wired directly into a Bilco OS2 control panel which provides a back up power supply in case of mains failure and will open the smoke vents automatically in the event of a fire. All three vents will open simultaneously when activated.

Simon Shand-Brown, sales and marketing manager for Bilco, said: "Bilco specialises in working with our clients to provide them with products that meet their needs. We are pleased that we were able to meet all the special requirements for smoke ventilators at Corpus Christi."

The installation of smoke vents reflects the growing attention being paid to this aspect of building design and safety by architects, building owners and regulatory authorities such as local council planning departments.

In addition to smoke vents, Bilco manufactures a range of access hatches, floor doors and access covers.

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