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7 Things To Know About Expo 2020’s UAE Pavilion

The UAE is hosting Expo 2020 in the Emirate of Dubai, and its home country pavilion is a force to be reckoned with. Here are 7 things you should know about this monumental national structure:

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The national pavilion is “shaped like a falcon in flight, the pavilion tells the story of the UAE as a global hub, and the vision of its leaders to create a peaceful and progressive society with ambitious plans for the future,” reads a statement about the grand structure.

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Designed by Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava, the team behind the UAE pavilion looks forward to welcoming visitor in less than a month.

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Sustainability is a key factor for the national pavilion, as it is a central theme to Expo 2020. Speaking about the conceptual structure, Calatrava stated, “We are committed to ensuring that the leading practices of environmental sustainability are embedded at the heart of the design process.” The pavilion incorporates photovoltaic (PV) panels, which are positioned to allow them to absorb the maximum amount of sunlight to power the pavilion. It has also been designed in accordance with the Dubai Green Building Regulations and Specifications (DGBR).

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Surrounding the pavilion are landscaped areas consisting of over 5600 different plants derived from 12 species. From those, around 2350 of them are significant to the UAE, as well as 45 trees out of the 80 planted there. This landscaped element is also integrated within the pavilion to uphold the theme of sustainability. 

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Speaking of the landscaping and the elements that are significant to the UAE, Calatrava also integrated the important history and future of the country by creating immersive and interactive experiences for visitors in order to evoke emotion and excitement as they move around the pavilion. 

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Sitting in the pavilion’s center is an auditorium built with a faceted spherical façade that is 21m tall and 25m in diameter. The auditorium can hold up to 200 people and serves as a centerpiece and a functional space for events.  A specialized lifting platform has been added to transport the audience from floor to floor as they view audio-visual shows.  

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One of the UAE’s national pavilion’s most noteworthy features is the winged structure on its roof. It contains 28 wings in a hybrid shell and portal frame. The wings, which symbolize the flow of movement, can move in a multitude of ways, between 110 and 125 degrees, and are powered by 46 specialized and synchronized hydraulic actuators that serve the function of pistons. There is another eye-catching feature on the rooftop: the Oculus skylight. Designed to mirror the Expo 2020 logo, it is a fixed insulated glazing unit system that would let in light, while also maintaining cooler temperatures indoors.

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