HD Hyundai Global R＆D Center / Nikken Sekkei
A smart R&D office that integrates 17 HD Hyundai Group companies – The HD Hyundai Global R&D Center is in Seongnam, 30km south of Seoul. Approximately 5,000 researchers from various fields work in a building that brings together the R&D departments of 17 HD Hyundai Group firms. The three concepts of “CUBE,” “VOID,” and “GRID” were employed to foster “intellectual creativity” and “a sense of unity” in the group.
Symbolic façade with three-dimensional CUBEs – “SMART CUBE” is a symbolic cube-shaped design 90m square, consisting of 20 x 20 x 20 modules of 4.5m cubes. Visible from all directions, including the highway next to the project site, the beautiful, homogeneous steel outer frame facade expresses both HD’s identity as a company that has grown up with steel, as well as its corporate attitude toward the environment. The cubic shape of the building contributes to lowering the overall heat load by reducing the surface area per volume in the hot, humid summers and in the cold winters. The square cube design also creates a strong steel frame, with structural stability and a fire-resistant CFT (concrete-filled tube) structure.
VOID: where light, wind, and people come and go – “SMART VOID” is a huge void space in the center of the building that connects the entire facility. It unites the 17 group companies, induces communication, and reduces energy use with natural lighting and ventilation. A continuous stepped communication deck faces the void space to induce information exchange. The deck visualizes the activities of office workers, facilitates movement between upper and lower floors, and encourages incidental interaction. This smart workplace allows for smooth traffic and collaboration transcending group boundaries to generate innovation.
A flexible and comfortable indoor environment realized by GRID – The “SMART GRID” is based on a 4.5-meter outer-frame GRID which maximizes efficiency (the office space is pillar-less), while improving environmental performance of the perimeter zone by shielding against solar radiation. The GRID-shaped ceiling with slits for lighting fixtures flexibly accommodates partition changes. The GRID ceiling also incorporates radiant heating and cooling as well as a chilled beam system to create a draft-free and comfortable thermal environment. The ventilation system supplies outside air through the ceiling and returns it through the floor to circulate fresh air efficiently – an important wellness feature since the advent of COVID-19.
Evidence-based engineering for a decarbonized society – Our evidence-based engineering creates a rich, comfortable indoor environment and promotes global de-carbonization. In addition to the above innovations, we have deployed large-scale water thermal storage to reduce peak power consumption, as well as on-site solar power generation. Further performance improvements are enabled by daily monitoring of operations and by providing feedback. We introduced a DC power distribution system developed by HD Hyundai to supply power for office lighting and electric heat pumps. As more equipment comes to adopt DC power sources such as LED lighting, solar cells, and storage batteries, systems with no AC-DC conversion loss represent advanced initiatives for future expansion.