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Lord of the Rings Lightweight Chainmail Transformed into Architectural Plastic Mesh

Born out of the need for lightweight and wearable chainmail for The Lord of the Rings trilogy of films, Kaynemaile (paywall-protected link) is a lightweight architectural mesh injected molded and assembled out of polycarbonate (PC) resin rings. Eponymous manufacturer Kaynemaile was nurtured at out of New Zealand special effects firm Weta Workshop and is now winning awards in the U.S. for its mesh that besides delivering stunningly on the design front also functions as a  passive cooling mechanism in hot climates. In an early installation on the Gold Coast in Australia, Kaynemaile found an up to 16°C difference between the shaded and unshaded concrete.

Kaynemaile is making waves in Silicon Valley. The stunning facade for the Lawson Lane campus in Santa Clara, CA, features its new range of three-dimensional, kinetic screens across the parking garage.

Image: Kaynemaile

Spanning full height and only connecting to the building at the top and bottom meant that the system could be installed fast. Unlike metal or membrane products that require a complex rigid frame and connection system, each Kaynemaile screen on this project has a self-supporting lightweight internal frame connected to vertical stainless steel cables. A ribbon of Kaynemaile Bronze coloured polycarbonate mesh runs over each frame creating a kite-like structure, providing great air flow through the garage.

The different locations of each projecting section give contrasting light and shadow effects, enhancing the deep wave across the face. The nature of the stainless steel support system combined with Kaynemaile’s lightweight polycarbonate architectural mesh allows it to move to the wind along the San Tomas Expressway, creating a kinetic, expressive building for passers-by.

Kaynemaile’s mesh is made from 100% recyclable engineering grade polycarbonate and manufactured to withstand the demands of high temperature and UV exposure zones, plus it’s durable and easy to maintain.

With up to 70% solar reduction and compliant air flow all within a self-supporting package this Kaynemaile system is a beautiful addition to the architecture of Silicon Valley.


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