Following its success on the recently opened John Lewis flagship store in Liverpool, Longworth Building Services has again specified Sika’s revolutionary secret fix SikaTack Panel Adhesive, this time for the nearby Liverpool John Moores University’s new Art and Design Academy.

Serving more than 24,000 students, Liverpool John Moores University is the largest institution in Liverpool by student population. Its flagship £27 million development, designed by Rick Mather Architects is central to the University’s growth and aims to benefit not only its students but also the local creative industries. The building has been described as having a serpentine form – bending and curving in response to its context – and is the first phase of the University's campus masterplan.

It was essential that the project should meet the highest aesthetic standards, a task for which SikaTack panel Adhesive was perfectly suited. The system allowed triangular soffits to be bonded vertically to the building’s attractive fins without the need for obtrusive and unsightly mechanical fittings, reducing cold bridging and retaining the flawless look of the structure. Due to their unusual shape, specialist contractor Longworth Building Services fabricated the soffits on site, using sheet aluminium.

SikaTack Panel Adhesive requires no screws, bolts or brackets but relies on powerful elastic adhesives that bond cladding to structures. Incredibly versatile, the adhesive works with composites, ceramics, high pressure laminates and cement based cladding. It is also effective upon most metals and powder coated substrates.

The system is also very easy to apply. After cleaning the surface on to which the soffits were to be fixed to, Longworth Building Services applied a primer to both the surface and the soffit panels. Super strong Sika Fixing Tape was then applied before the SikaTack Panel Adhesive is applied. This high performance double sided tape held the entire weight of the soffits whilst the SikaTack Panel Adhesive cured and formed a permanent bond.

Cheaper than any secret fix system, it’s just as permanent. Tested and endorsed by the Centre for Window and Cladding Technology, it has impressive wind loading and dead weight capacities. As the bond is elastic, unlike traditional systems, it allows cladding to move with the structure as weather, temperature and normal building movements dictate, reducing strain on panelling.

Having attained British Board of Agrément Certification for its durability, resistance to both weather and fire, plus accreditation to ISO 9001/EN29001, SikaTack Panel Adhesive has proved not only an aesthetic, but also a high quality addition to the Liverpool John Moores University development.

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