New Saldome2 Building in Rheinfelden, Switzerland

Customer Project

Structural Engineering Häring Projekt AG
Engineers R. Schneider, C. Zihlmann
Eiken, Switzerland
Construction Planning
Häring & Co. AG

Construction of structural system
Häring Holz- und Systembau AG
Investor Schweizer Rheinsalinen AG
Pratteln, Switzerland

Length: 120 m | Width: 120 m | Height: 31.6 m
Number of Nodes: 211 | Members: 582 | Materials: 1 | Cross-Sections: 1

In May 2012, the new Saldome2 of the Swiss company Salt Works on the Rhine AG was officially put into operation. With a span length of 120 m and a height of 31.6 m the salt storage is the biggest dome structure in Europe.

It was designed and built by Häring, a Swiss company specialized in timber technology. The structural analysis was performed by Häring engineers, R. Schneider and C. Zihlmann, using the Dlubal Software programs RSTAB and TIMBER Pro.

Huge Salt Storage

With a base area of 11,300 square meters, Saldome2 is about the same size as two football pitches. Thus, it is almost twice as big as the first dome construction "Saldome1" put into operation in August 2005. It is possible to store more than 100,000 tons of road salt inside the new Saldome2. The base area of the salt storage has a circumference of 377 meters.

Structural Concept "Häring Ensphere"

The shell structure of the Saldome2's structural system is a radical departure from traditional methods of construction. C. Häring calls his concept the "Häring Ensphere" (from American English: a spherical form enveloping a space). It is based on the fact that every detached and double curved type of construction spans the internal space above a ring foundation so that the room created inside can be used absolutely freely.

The lamella arch structure made of glued-laminated timber consists of a primary and a secondary framework structure. In total, the construction is composed of 894 structural elements which are supported by 48 foundations and connected by 163 nodes (two connection points per node). The individual elements of the dome were rigidly bolted using 4,272 bolts (eight bolts for each main beam).

The result is a high-capacity structure rivaling steel and concrete constructions with regard to efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

The entire structural system was cantilevered (built without scaffolding) by using aerial work platforms. That is why separate analysis models were used to analyze the high number of resulting construction stages.

Programs Used for Structural Analysis

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