asphericon celebrates cornerstone laying for new timber hybrid building in Jena
asphericon, a technology leader for aspherical optics, on 31 May 2022 laid the foundation stone for its new administrative building in Jena. The office building is being realised by Ed. Züblin AG using its serial and modular timber hybrid construction system MOLENO. The new building at the asphericon premises will combine sustainability with a pleasant indoor climate while creating space for the company’s continuously growing workforce. The building is scheduled for completion after a short construction period of 12 months as part of an investment package totalling € 15 million.
Since the start of construction on 12 March, the project team at ZÜBLIN’s Jena business unit has been realising a new four-storey office building with a gross floor area of 1,460 m² on the premises of asphericon GmbH. The new building will fit harmoniously into the existing administration and production site. A total of 1,200 m² of new floor space will be built for the company’s administration and development departments – tripling the current amount of space. “First and foremost, we are delighted to be able to create more space for our colleagues,” says asphericon CEO Alexander Zschäbitz. “Despite the pandemic situation last year, we were able maintain our course with over 50 % growth and are continuing to create new jobs and expand our product range. This development now necessitates an investment in our main premises here in Jena, including an expansion of the social areas, modernisation of the sanitary facilities and much more,” Zschäbitz adds.
"MOLENO timber hybrid construction system reduces the carbon footprint of the new building"
A central focus of the project, already from the planning stage, is its sustainability. “Our MOLENO timber hybrid construction system significantly reduces the carbon footprint of the new building compared to traditional concrete construction methods,” as Michael Stange, technical manager of ZÜBLIN’s Jena business unit, explains. Wood is a renewable resource and the only building material that binds carbon dioxide, and using wood reduces the need for energy-intensive materials such as steel and concrete. A second important advantage of the timber hybrid construction method is the systematically short construction time. All timber construction elements for façades and walls are prefabricated to precision by timber construction specialist ZÜBLIN Timber at its Aichach plant and only need to be assembled on site. This will allow ZÜBLIN to complete the core and shell, including the building envelope, this December after a construction period of just nine months.
The asphericon project is the first building in the optics industry to be built using sustainable timber construction methods. “We have been pursuing the goal of working without gas and oil since 2011, when we built our first own facility here in Jena. In the meantime, two further locations have been added, which are of course also being operated without gas or oil. The new building therefore fits in perfectly with our sustainability strategy, which already includes an in-house solar plant, EV charging stations, around 25 electric cars and over 50 company bicycles,” says Zschäbitz on the subject of sustainability at asphericon. As in the company’s existing buildings, the new building will also use waste heat recovery to heat the premises and photovoltaic system to generate electricity.
Zschäbitz puts the total investment volume at € 15 million. This includes not only the new building but also an expansion of the machinery and equipment. Besides the Jena facility, asphericon is also investing nearly 1/3 of the budget in its Czech plant.
More information about asphericon:
Dr. Thomas Hegenbart