Architecture Engineering & ConstructionOctober 6, 2023

Paris metro station brings automation to facade design

Dutch facade designer and manufacturer Aldowa was tasked with engineering thousands of interior panels for the new Saint-Denis Pleyel metro station. Here’s how the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud made it possible.
Avatar Rebecca Lambert

When it opens its doors to the public in time for a major international sports event in 2024, Saint-Denis Pleyel will be one of the busiest and largest railway stations in Paris’ metropolitan area. Step inside, and the impressive interior facade you see will be made up of over 8,000 square meters of stainless steel and enamel panels. It’s all being engineered, manufactured and installed by Dutch company Aldowa, which has built a reputation on its ability to make the wildest ideas concrete and workable.

Like many innovative developments today, turning a vision like Saint-Denis Pleyel into a reality requires modern ways of working and state-of-the-art technology. For this particular project, Aldowa decided to adopt a new integrated design approach and invest in digital capabilities, such as generative design, powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud.

“Larger and taller buildings require different ways of working and more prefabrication and preparation offsite instead of traditional on-site installation,” said Misja van Hattum, who is responsible for innovation and engineering at Aldowa. “As a company, it means that we deal with varied projects of greater complexity. That’s why we’ve chosen to work with 3DEXPERIENCE.”

To meet its deadline, Aldowa realized it needed to bring automation to its design processes. The company worked with Dassault Systèmes through an Outcome-Based Engagement approach to develop a generative design tool that could automatically create the structure and associated fixing system for almost 6,000 facade panels, of which 1,000 are unique, and handle any design changes as efficiently as possible.

Aldowa has ended up being able to take advantage of CATIA features on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform that allow its engineers to select and define the type of walls they want to generate, calculate the geometries and automatically apply the associated structural elements according to the panel’s location within the station.

Today, the company has gained in efficiency. It can plan all downstream manufacturing and installation processes from the same data, and collaborate seamlessly with key stakeholders. Read the full story here to discover exactly how Aldowa is virtualizing its facade design and using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the cloud to further enhance its design capabilities.

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