Durability + Design
 
About  |  Subscribe  |  Advertise  |  Connect 
Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook

 

Download our free eBook on Fire Resistive Coating sponsored by Shield Industries Inc.

D+D News

Main News Page


Hotel Takes Heat for ‘Death Ray’ Design

Monday, February 18, 2013

More items for Building Envelope

Comment | More

Architectural glass facades may reduce operation costs and enhance aesthetic appeal, but their so-called "death ray" effect is proving less popular.

The Vdara Hotel & Spa in Las Vegas is among the properties that has sizzled in the national spotlight for this phenomenon.

Due to the building’s reflective surface and concave design, strong Nevada sunlight reflects off the hotel’s south side tower to create dangerously hot conditions at particular points on the pool deck below, according to various reports.

Local news reports say (and show) plastic drink cups, flip flops and shopping bags have melted due to the exposure.

Varda Hotel Vdara hotel
Images/video: ABC News.com (left and below); Kris1123 / Wikimedia Commons (right)

The desert sun's reflection off the Vdara Hotel's massive glass facade, a phenomenon called "solar convergence," has guests hot under the collar—and other places. The hotel says it has addressed the issue.

The hotel, designed by Rafael Vinoly Architects, opened in December 2009 and is LEED Gold certified. It is a part of the $8.5 billion, six-skyscraper CityCenter development.

Solar Convergence Phenomenon

The term “death ray” was one allegedly coined by resort employees, according to a report in the Las Vegas Review Journal. Other reports have used the term "heat ray."

MGM Resorts International, which owns the hotel, describes the occurrence as a “solar convergence phenomenon.”

Boston homeowner

It doesn't take a multistory wall of glass to cause problems. Homeowners in Boston say their siding has been melted by their neighbors' high-efficiency windows.

“Solar convergence phenomenon occurs anywhere the sun’s rays are reflected off a glass-walled building,” according to a spokeswoman from MGM.  

“The effect at Vdara is heightened by the concave shape of the building that curves around the hotel pool deck,” Yvette Monet, a MGM public affairs officer, told D+D News.

But other structures, including homes in the North and Northeast, have also been affected, according to a variety of news reports.

Coatings to the Rescue?

At the Vdara, the owner and developer were made aware of the issue in late 2008 and took measures to curb the issue by applying a thin, high-tech film to the glass panels on the south façade, reports say.

Vdara Hotel

Reports show that the reflected heat has crumpled cups and melted print off plastic shopping bags at the poolside base of the concave glass facade.

Critics suggest those coatings, meant to scatter some of the reflective light, did not work. Further remedies involving coatings have not been implemented.

"Coatings were not involved in any of the [hotel's] fixes," Monet said.

Instead, she said Vdara has taken a number of steps to alleviate the effect and accommodate the movement of the sun’s reflection throughout the day, including installing umbrellas and signage reminding guests of the importance of responsible sunning. The hotel also offers hats and sunscreen for purchase.

“Sun exposure in areas surrounded by glass buildings may intensify the effects of sunning,” Monet said.

   

Tagged categories: Architecture; Coating types; Design; Energy efficiency; Glass coatings; Hotels

Comment from Stephen Bolling, (2/18/2013, 5:02 AM)

The hotel also offers hats and sunscreen for purchase? BOYCOTT both the hotel and the architect.


Comment from Donald L Crusan, (2/18/2013, 8:15 AM)

Too consistent with most things today. Don't stop and take the time to think, just react after the fact. As you said Stephen for Purchase? And umbrellas and signs as a proactive solution!


Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

Graco Inc.
Eco-Friendly Surface Prep

• Blast with 92% less dust
• Use less media
• Less containment & disposal costs
Graco® EcoQuip® Vapor Abrasive® Blast Equipment Learn more


Pratt & Lambert Paints
THE PREMIUM STANDARD FOR PROFESSIONAL PAINTERS

Pro-Hide® Gold Ultra is the ideal paint for your customers and your business. It delivers a beautiful finish, outstanding hide, easy application and excellent touch-up. And now pros can bid on even more jobs, because Pro-Hide Gold Ultra is MPI® Approved for interior gloss levels 1-5.


KTA-Tator, Inc. - Corporate Office
KTA Consulting Services

Independent assessment of coating failures – in the field and laboratory.
Contact: Kevin Brown, 336-386-4000


Atlas Material Testing Technology

Helping You Put Your Products To The Test

• Outdoor Accelerated
Weathering
• Laboratory Testing
Services
• Accelerated Weathering
Instruments

www.atlas-mts.com atlas.info@ametek.com


Seymour Midwest
Coating Application Tools & Supplies

Visit our “Where to Buy” site to find a local paint or tool supplier near you. Click here for a chance to win $500 of Tools & Supplies. 1(844)739-6687 Sales@SeymourMidwest.com


PPG Pittsburgh Paints
Wonder-Pure

Our professional-quality, zero-VOC* paint provides outstanding durability, ease of application, and good hide and coverage. Its low odor allows painters and maintenance professionals to paint in occupied spaces with little disruption. Its anti-microbial properties resist mold and mildew stains on the paint film.


Keim Mineral Coatings
Hide concrete repairs and blemishes

Concretal® Stains are translucent and penetrate forming permanent bonds that will never peel. Finished concrete looks "raw" but is visually equalized.

 
 
 

Technology Publishing Co., 2100 Wharton Street, Suite 310, Pittsburgh PA 15203-1951

TEL 1-412-431-8300  • FAX  1-412-431-5428  •  EMAIL webmaster@durabilityanddesign.com


The Technology Publishing Network

Durability + Design PaintSquare the Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings Paint BidTracker

 

© Copyright 2012-2016, Technology Publishing Co., All rights reserved