|Blue Planet Aquarium, Denmark (concept)|
Grand Junction, CO, USA (April 3, 2012) /PRWEB/ — Three aquariums under construction in Asia, Europe, and the US will treat visitors to impressive underwater views once they’re finished with the help of crystal clear R-Cast® acrylic from Reynolds Polymer Technology, Inc. (RPT) and RPT, Asia Ltd. These aquariums are raising the bar for what public aquariums can offer to guests, in terms of both variety of marine life and their habitat construction.
“To work on each of these projects around the same time, and taking into consideration the scale of these projects, it’s no small feat,” explained Roger R. Reynolds, III, CEO of RPT. “In looking at the designs for each of these aquariums, there is something unique about each of them. They really show where aquarium design can go regardless of the size of the venue.”
In Yeosu, a seaport on the southern end of South Korea, a new aquarium is under construction for EXPO 2012, an international gathering dedicated to advancement of knowledge and technology as it relates to the ocean. RPT will provide more than 50 R-Cast® acrylic windows for that aquarium, including a 20 foot diameter underwater R-Cast® acrylic dome room with two 20 foot-plus long acrylic tunnels. The largest acrylic panel in that aquarium is 56 feet long, nearly 23 feet tall, and almost 20 inches thick – roughly 1.5 times longer than a bus.
RPT is also responsible for several R-Cast® acrylic windows at the new Blue Planet Aquarium in Denmark. The largest acrylic window on-site will measure more than 51 feet long, nearly 25 feet tall, and almost 19 inches thick. RPT also manufactured and fabricated a 56 foot long tunnel that spans the floor of an exhibit, allowing visitors to walk amongst the marine life that will call the exhibit home. This tunnel is slightly more than 10 feet wide and five inches thick as it sits nearly 15 feet beneath the surface of the water.
In the U.S., RPT is supplying and installing all the acrylic panels for the Wonders of Wildlife aquarium, located next to Bass Pro Shops headquarters in Springfield, Missouri. Of these windows, the largest is a curved window for their fresh water game fish exhibit that’s more than 32 feet long, 7.5 feet tall, and more than six inches thick. Several other windows will allow guests to go underwater in a river and experience the different types of fish and vegetation that thrive in that environment. RPT also supplied an R-Cast® acrylic tunnel that measures nearly 33 feet long, more than 10 feet wide, 8.5 feet tall, and four inches thick. This tunnel will take guests underwater through a game fish and stingray exhibit.
“There was a considerable amount of combined learning from each of these projects,” said Dave Duff, VP of Technical Development at RPT. “What we learned from one project we could roll out to the other projects. In the end, we were able to bond panels together at nearly twice the rate as we did when we first started, simply because of systems we honed to a fine point in response to project needs.”
Duff explained that RPT performed 26 onsite bonds – a proprietary process to RPT that allows acrylic panels to be seamlessly adhered to each other – over the last six months on all in-progress jobs RPT was working on, including these three. That averages out to about one bond per week and 1.2 million pounds (590 tons) of acrylic.
Yeosu EXPO 2012 and Blue Planet aquariums will open to the public in 2012; Wonders of Wildlife will open in phases, with the final phase opening in 2013.
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