PCT produced 1312 composite panels to complete the 26,400 square metres surface area of the Madinah Station roof.
PCT produced 1312 composite panels to complete the 26,400 square metres surface area of the Madinah Station roof.

The Haramain High Speed Railway project links the cities of Makkah and Madinah via Jeddah and King Abdullah Economic City. Driven by the Saudi Railway Organization, the work involves a 450 km rail link between Mecca and Madinah, and includes the construction of 4 passenger stations. Each station has its own distinctive design to represent the city it serves.

Premier Composite Technologies (PCT), a  manufacturer of composite components for the architectural, transportation and boat building markets, was awarded the contract to build the concourse roof of the station at Madinah in February 2012. PCT's work included the design engineering, manufacturing, delivery and installation of the composite cladding for the roof.

Composite solution

Designed in a joint venture between Foster+Partners and Buro Happold, the Madinah Station features a design of umbrellas with green tiling. The concourse roof design consists of a repetitive pattern made up of 41 panels that fit together to make one large square module of 27 m x 27 m in size.

Each panel had to be structurally lightweight, fire resistant, immune to extreme temperatures and weather conditions, and easy to install. Working alongside Foster+Partners and Buro Happold, PCT developed a composite solution to meet all requirements.

The roof is built using a fire resistant composite of glass fibre and epoxy resin combined with lightweight foam core and is finished with glass mosaic coloured tiles.

PCT produced 1312 of these panels to complete the 26,400 m2 surface area of the Madinah Station roof.

The structure has been designed to use as much natural light as possible. For this purpose the roof panels have diamond-shaped skylights incorporated into the design.

The composite roof has a suspended inner ceiling made of green anodised aluminium segments with an embossed perforated pattern and fixed anti-glare lamellas to help achieve high reflectivity (a minimum of 95%).

The glass skylights are dropped into the moulded recess after the roof is assembled and are equipped with anti-glare system to enhance the light distribution inside the station.

Easy installation

Installation started in October 2013. PCT is the first contractor to successfully complete the installation of all roof panels at the Madinah Station.

A modular approach to the design with a high degree of prefabrication meant that all fibre reinforced plastic (FRP) parts were produced at PCT's facilities in Dubai Investment Park. Installation and final sealing operations were done on site.

On the ground, 4 panels were pre-assembled to form a segment of approximately 100 m2 weighing almost 4 tonnes. Adjustable footing in three directions allows for easy on-site installation and fixation to the main steel structure. With no secondary structure in place, the largest span is 13.5 m.

Each module is able to move independently with movement joints sealing the gaps between the modules. The movement joints are covered using FRP FRP SS clad capping which also serves as maintenance walkways.