Materials used in our awnings sails

Textile architecture

Textile materials to create refreshing shade


The human being, since antiquity, has resorted to the use of stretched textile structures for the creation of all kinds of protection and comfort elements (huts, awnings, hammocks, beds, etc …) due to its lightness and ease to be transported. At present we witness an explosion of this type of construction thanks to the appearance of new technical textiles, accompanied by the evolution and improvement of computer tools that help us to give them three-dimensional shape.

We are talking about the Textile Architecture and its enormous potential for constructive efficiency, formal creation and spatial transformation possessed by tense-structures: ephemeral installations, constructions pneumatic, awnings, lightweight or retractable textile covers, metal mesh structures, as well as interior elements such as screens, false ceilings, screens or furniture.

CatVela offers this service that makes possible the design and execution of textile structures with special demands, due to their shape, size or other unusual characteristics that are not easy to find in the market.

The market offers a wide variety of textile materials for the elaboration of shade elements. However, not all of them provide us with the same thermal comfort conditions when we are in their shade.

Hubertus Pöppinghaus, architect specialized in textile architecture and energy efficiency in building, has developed in his doctoral thesis an investigation to be able to conclude which are the most suitable materials for the Mediterranean climate. His study ranges from traditional materials used for awnings to the most current technical fabrics. The objective is not only to find the materials that cast the most shade but those that provide us with a greater sensation of freshness.

The Sustainable Construction Agency, of the Association of Quantity Surveyors and Technical Architects of Barcelona, ​​has been interested in this research. Here you can see the video-summary about REFRESHING AWNINGS developed by this entity.