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Zurich Airport Improves Lighting and Spatial Effects With SEFAR® Architecture LightFrame

Concourse Terminal Glows With Modular Fabric Ceiling System

Publish Date: Tuesday, May 10, 2011

DEPEW, NY… SEFAR® Architecture’s LightFrame system warmly welcomes passengers and employees with large-scale overhead lighting inside the Zurich Airport in Zurich, Switzerland. The modular fabric ceiling covers 3,229 square feet of the redesigned shopping concourse between Terminal 1 and Car Park Elevator 1, improving lighting effects and spatial acoustics.

“One of the goals of this project was to create the feeling of an open sky as a connection between the airport and traveling,” explains architect Florin Baeriswyl from dai zurich. “With the LightFrame system and innovative light variations, we were able to simulate a sky to create a pleasant, comforting and relaxing environment."

SEFAR Architecture LightFrame is the only fabric framing system available that can provide both light diffusion and acoustic improvements. It features wrinkle-free, high light-diffusing architectural fabrics biaxially stretched over a light, modular frame system. The aluminum frame is 12 centimeters deep and assists with light deflection.

LightFrame’s seamless modules use locking screws to bring the edges of adjacent frames less than a half-inch apart, providing impressive uniformity of light distribution and appearance. The modules are also very simple to construct and access for light source maintenance. LightFrame features a duel skin system, unlike competitive products that are single skin. As a result, the airtight double layer covering eliminates penetration of dust and insects on the fabric membrane.

The Zurich Airport LightFrame system was specified with SEFAR Architecture’s IA-80­CL PVDF mesh fabric, which allows 80 percent light transmission. The low-maintenance material resists UV rays, moisture and dirt and meets all fire code requirements. In the event of a fire, it produces very little smoke and instead of dripping, retracts like a skin.

SEFAR Architecture fabrics have undergone a series of tests at Empa, the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Testing and Research. According to the EN ISO 354 standard, the fabrics have proven to be acoustically optimized to improve sound quality and reduce reverberation.

The LightFrame system is used in conjunction with an energy-efficient light source with a separate control system. To simulate daylight, there is a constant change in light quality and intensity. The fabric acts as a light diffuser and deliberately allows the technical equipment to be seen in slight outline.

To learn more about SEFAR Architecture’s LightFrame system, visit

The project began in June 2008 and was completed in August 2008. Members of the project team included architect Florin Baeriswyl, dai zurich, Zurich, Switzerland, engineers Dr. Ing. S. Greiner, Stuttgart, Germany, ArtEngineering GmbH, Oberried, Germany, distributor and installer Krapf AG, Engelburg, Switzerland.

SEFAR Architecture LightFrame is recognized as an innovative and influential product in the design industry, recently winning a 2010 GOOD DESIGN™ Award. Presented by the Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design and the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies, the GOOD DESIGN Award remains the oldest and most recognized program for design excellence worldwide. In June 2011, The Chicago Athenaeum will host the annual GOOD DESIGN SHOW in Chicago, IL, where LightFrame will be exhibited. For more information about the award, visit:

About SEFAR Architecture: SEFAR Architecture is a leading manufacturer of monofilament precision and ePTFE yarn fabrics and fabric systems for interior and exterior architectural applications. With comprehensive knowledge in textile architecture, Sefar has cooperated with experienced lighting technicians and polymer experts to develop a new generation of fabrics for the architectural and design community. For more information on SEFAR Architecture’s products and services, call Peter Katcha at 727-388-4919 or visit