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Sasol Head Office

Architect: Paragon Architects
Client: Alchemy Properties
Location: Johannesburg, Gauteng
Year Completed: 2017
PJC Services: Passive & Low Energy Design, Daylight & Visual Comfort, Sustainable Design Management, Water Management Strategy, Green Building Certification, Building Commissioning Process, SANS 10400-XA

The new Sasol headquarters in Sandton consolidates all of Sasol’s satellite offices across Johannesburg under one roof. It is a concrete framed system with an entirely glazed façade. The ground floor is mainly for common spaces such as auditoriums, various canteens, a gym as well as an art gallery. The building has seven parking levels in the basement and ten levels of office space above the ground floor. The building is designed in an S-shape linking the core of the building to the two large atria.

The project achieved a Green Star SA Office 5 star rating from the GBCSA. Integral to both the energy and indoor environmental quality of the building is the design of the building envelope where the performance of the envelope varies according to orientation and the nature of the occupancy behind the envelope.

The façade of the building is entirely high-performance glazing which has been selected to balance the solar control performance with the daylight availability. The iconic look of the building envelope is due to the combination of the reflective glass spandrels and vision glass provided at various sill and header heights wrapped around the building. Parametric analyses were done in order to balance the solar thermal performance, glare and daylight with the occupancy behind the glass and corresponding thermal comfort while achieving an energy efficient HVAC system.

There are two atria in the building in order to bring light into the space. The baffles which accent the skylights are designed to deflect and diffuse direct sunlight entering the building and thus reduce the solar heat gain of the building in addition to prevent the occupants on the office spaces adjacent to the atria experiencing glare from the skylights. By calculating the depth at which the sun angles enter through the skylights daily throughout the year, the depths and spacing of the baffles have been parametrically simulate and designed, thus creating the undulating forms.

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