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Metalspray and the architect: the Burj Al Arab Hotel, Dubai

Supplier: MSSA Interweld By: Kevin Healey, MSSA Interweld
22 July, 2015

You've heard of the world famous Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai, right? It's one of the tallest buildings in the world. What you might not know is that metal spraying played a critical part in its construction.

The hotel is situated on an artificial island approx. 300m off Jumeirah Beach, which is connected to the mainland by a private curving bridge. Its design was based upon a dhow, an Arabian boat with a triangular sail or sails.

Long concrete piles were driven into the sand to secure a foundation. A surface layer of rocks, circled with a concrete honeycomb pattern, protect the foundation from erosion. Whileit took three years to reclaim the land from the sea, it took fewer than three years to construct the building.

The hotel employs 9,000 tons of steel and more than 70,000 cubic meters of concrete. The internal atrium is 180m tall. Despite its size, it only accommodates 28 double story floors with 202 suites.

The metal spraying process

When the Burj Al Arab was being built, vital structural components were metal sprayed to protect against corrosion. In total, over 9,000 square meters of steelwork was metal sprayed using the Arcspray system.

The elements that were sprayed included the heli-deck framework, the roof mounted mast and six diagonal support braces each weighing in excess of 200 tons. An epoxy sealer and a three coat paint system were then applied for aesthetics and finished with a top coat of polyurethane.