ArmaForm Core used in the roof structure of the King Abdullah railway station


The King Abdullah railway station is one stop on Saudi Arabia's Haramain High Speed Rail project, which will link the most important religious cities, Medina and Mecca, via the developing King Abdulla Economic City, Jeddah and King Abdulaziz International Airport. According to the Saudi Railways Organisation, the five stations on the 460 km long high-speed railway line will be 'aesthetically iconic' buildings, with designs that take Islamic architectural traditions into account, including shops, restaurants, mosques, car parking, a helipad and VIP lounges.

BFG International, located in the Kingdom of Bahrain, will supply the roofing system of King Abdullah Station. It will be built out of advanced composite materials and will cover a surface area of approximately 34,400 m². BFG is the recognised leader in the design and manufacturing of fiber-reinforced composite across a broad spectrum of applications. For the complex roof structure of the King Abdullah Station, BFG was searching for a sandwich solution combining high structural strength with low weight. After extensive testing, our low density ArmaForm Core proved to be the core material of choice for the roof structure, because it offers reduced weight while providing equivalent stiffness and strength.

We are proud to be part of this groundbreaking project. Continuous drive to improve the quality and price ratio of ArmaForm Core enable us to be competitive in the structural insulation market and to substitute for more and more traditional core materials like PVC, SAN, PUR/PIR.

The structural roof panels are made of a sandwich laminate of a low-density ArmaForm Core, reinforced with high-strength multiaxial glass fiber and laminated by fire-retarded epoxy resin. The lightweight character of these roof panels requires less supporting structure, facilitates and hastens handling during assembly and lowers transport and installation costs.

The roof design and construction of King Abdullah Station is exposed to harsh climatic conditions, with temperatures ranging from 0 to +50°C. Our PET foam cores provide enough temperature stability to manage such changes, even at +80°C temperatures on the roof surface in summer. In addition to its thermal stability, ArmaForm Core performs very well in wet conditions. The PET foam core's closed cell structure prevents water and moisture absorption and thus reducing the degradation of structural and insulation properties. Its excellent resistance to corrosion and rot significantly increases the durability of FRP composite panels using ArmaForm Core.

Less maintenance and fewer repairs mean reduced life cycle costs, not to mention the PET foam core's inherent high thermal insulation properties that keep the heat outside and the cooling inside. For a country like Saudi Arabia with a desert climate, the potential energy savings are enormous. The thermoplastic basis of ArmaForm Core allows thermoforming and bending of the panels into complex shapes and geometries. This design flexibility allows the realisation of almost any roof structure form and shape that an architect might envision.

Meeting the stringent fire, smoke and toxicity properties for materials used in public buildings is crucial. External testing of the roof panels shows that ArmaForm Core complies with the requirements of the American ASTM E84 test standard for building materials.


Also see: facade structure of KAFD World Trade Center made of ArmaForm Core