Template:Infobox Swimming venue

The Beijing National Aquatics Center (Template:Zh-ts), also known as the Water Cube (水立方) or abbreviated [H2O]3[1], is an aquatics center that was built alongside Beijing National Stadium in the Olympic Green for the 2008 Summer Olympics. Ground was broken on December 24, 2003.


Architecture[edit | edit source]

The Water Cube was initially designed by PTW Architects [2], CSCEC International Design and Arup with structural Engineers Arup conceiving the structure. The structure was built by CSCEC (China State Construction Engineering Corporation). Comprising a steel space frame, it is the largest ETFE clad structure in the world with over 100,000 m² of ETFE pillows that are only eight one-thousandths of an inch in total thickness,[3] The ETFE cladding allows more light and heat penetration than traditional glass, resulting in a 30% decrease in energy costs[3].

The outer wall is based on the Weaire-Phelan structure, a foam (structure formed by soap bubbles).[4] The pattern is formed by taking a slice through the foam, and it was chosen in preference to the Kelvin foam because the more complex Weaire-Phelan structure results in more irregular, organic patterns than slices through the regular Kelvin foam.[5]

The structure will have a capacity of 17,000[3]during the games that will be reduced to 6,000 afterwards. It also has a total land surface of 65,000 square metres and will cover a total of 7.8 acres[3].

Olympics[edit | edit source]

The Aquatics Center will host the Swimming, Diving and Synchronized Swimming events during the Olympics. The Water Polo was originally planned to be hosted in the venue but has been moved to the Ying Tung Natatorium. Template:-

Awards[edit | edit source]


  • 2004 - Venice Biennale - Award for most accomplished work Atmosphere section[6]
  • 2006 - Popular Science Best of what's new 2006 in engineering[3]

References[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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