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DOWSIL™ Case Study Cornish Commons – Seattle, Washington

Cornish Commons residence hall with unique rainscreen design - Seattle, WA
Cornish Commons residence hall with unique rainscreen design – Seattle, Washington (Used with permission: Casey Braunger / Ankrom Moisan Architects)

A premier college for the visual and performing arts, Cornish College of the Arts’ main campus is located in Seattle’s popular South Lake Union neighborhood, where the 20-story Cornish Commons opened in 2015.

The new residence hall and academic building includes a unique rainscreen design featuring 3/16-inch thick architectural aluminum cladding on cold-form framing. The innovative building design boasts thermal performance 40% better than required by current Seattle Building Code.

Cornish Commons’ Challenge

To achieve its ambitious thermal performance, the rainscreen design includes 2-inch, continuous R-8, exterior insulation to supplement the R-32 interior batt/cavity insulation. But that created additional challenges to be compliant with the Seattle Building Code, which dictates use of insulation outboard of the metal framing. The proposed design needed an air barrier with high permeability to ensure water vapor was not trapped in the wall cavity.

Additionally, staying on schedule – in spite of challenging Seattle weather conditions – was critical. Minimizing product incompatibility issues also was important.

Cornish Commons’ Solution

Ankrom Moisan Architects, Inc. selected the 100% silicone DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System to ensure enclosure airtightness performance, durability and compatibility.

When we learned about the option of a fluid-applied silicone air and water barrier, we realized that DOWSIL DefendAir 200 was ideal for our needs. Not only did the spray-applied product simplify installation and eliminate the need for traditional membrane materials, its high permeability ensured our design’s compliance with Seattle Building Code.

Eric Bressman, Architect, Ankrom Moisan Architects

Unitized Construction

To keep the Cornish Commons project on schedule, the design called for a combination of unitized rainscreen panels and traditional construction techniques. The use of unitized panels assembled off-site in a controlled manufacturing environment enabled continued productivity, regardless of weather.

An external cladding contractor’s licensed use of a patented, universal joint system (U.S. Patent 8,943,773) facilitated construction of the unitized panels. This system is designed with interlocking joints that mitigate improper installation conditions that increase the risk of failure.ß The joint system relies on DOWSIL sealants for enhanced performance.

The panels used DOWSIL silicones exclusively: DOWSIL DefendAir 200 as an air barrier and DOWSIL 791 Silicone Weatherproofing Sealant for unit sealing. The quick cure capability of the DOWSIL products helped keep unit assembly on schedule. The unitized rainscreen system was used from the third floor to the 20th floor – using 30 units per floor – with approximately 50,000 square feet protected by the DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System.

All-Weather Installation

Construction on-site continued into late fall, due in part to the low-temperature installation capability of DOWSIL DefendAir 200, which can be applied at temperatures as low as 20°F (-6°C).

The ability to use spray-applied product was much easier, said Jerry Jensen, Project Manager. Its cold-weather ability allowed us to continue construction into inclement fall weather.

In addition to the unitized rainscreen panels, on-site work totaling nearly 8,000 square feet used the DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System on the first and second floors.

Confidently Build A Better Barrier – Simple. Compatible. Silicones.

Because it is not uncommon to face challenges with varying interfacing construction materials, having a compatible all-silicone solution from Dow was appreciated and advantageous.

Having exclusively silicone products ensured compatibility. Rather than an ‘origami’ of incompatible materials around openings, having all-silicone materials simplified construction and eliminated uncertainty. It is straightforward. We can get answers from a single, trusted manufacturer, without unproductive back-and-forth exchanges with multiple suppliers. It’s helpful to have the continuity and support – and the confidence of warranty protection – from [Dow.]

Jerry Jensen, Project Manager, external cladding contractor

Additionally, the all-silicone compatibility of the DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System allowed materials to be applied in any order, eliminating sequencing delays and expenses.

Learn More About DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System

Dow High Performance Building solutions include proven and innovative materials for structural and protective glazing, weatherproofing, insulating glass, high-efficiency insulation, and window and door fabrication. Learn more about the DOWSIL Silicone Air Barrier System and other High Performance Building solutions from Dow.


Last Modified: August 26, 2020

AIA Seattle – 2020 Honor Awards for Washington Architecture

AIA Seattle – 2020 Honor Awards Cityscape

Join AIA Seattle for the 2020 Honor Awards for Washington Architecture on Monday, November 16, 2020. This is a virtual event, and admission is free. Sponsored in part by Atlas Supply – Seattle.


6:30 PM – Virtual Lobby Opens

7:00 PM – Program Begins

8:00 PM – Program Ends.

AIA Seattle – 2020 Honor Awards

Learn More & RSVP

How to Use Albion’s B-Line Sausage Guns

Albion Engineering B12S20 20oz Sausage Gun with Accessories
Albion Engineering B12S20 20oz Sausage Gun with Accessories

Watch how to use Albion’s B-Line Sausage Guns (Video Transcript). Then learn more about the materials, tools and accessories required to operate safely and efficiently.

How to use Albion’s B-Line Sausage Guns Video Transcript

  • B12S20 20oz Sausage Gun w/smooth and efficient 12:1 ratio drive
  • Albion B-Line Sausage Guns come complete with 6 nozzles, spare sausage piston, steel ladder hook pull, and yellow bulk piston
  • Cut nozzle tip to desired opening
  • Unscrew front cap and pull back on rod
  • Load sausage pack/Chub into barrel
  • Clip front end of sausage pack
  • Place front cap over nozzle and screw on barrel
  • Ready to dispense
  • For tooling joint, consider using 258 series spatulas
  • Lightweight Aluminum Barrel
  • Rotating Barrel
  • Ladder Hook Pull
  • Comfortable Full-Size Handle
  • No Slip Double-Gripping Plates
  • Wear Adjustment Screw

Albion B-Line Sausage Guns Materials, Tools and Accessories – Shown

  • Backer Rod – Closed-cell, polyethylene foam, joint filler, 1/8 to 1-inch diameter
  • Razor Knife
  • Albion Engineering B12S20 20oz Sausage Gun – with smooth and efficient 12:1 ratio drive
  • Sausage pack of standard viscosity material – Expansion joint sealant
  • Scissors
  • Albion Engineering 258 Series Spatula.


Last Modified: September 14, 2020

NEOGARD® Unveils Refreshed Brand Identity, Logo and Website

LAS VEGAS (February 5, 2020) – Neogard®, a part of Hempel, announced at the 2020 World of Concrete Show in Las Vegas, Nevada that it launched a refreshed brand identity, redesigned logo and website. The changes reemphasize the product line’s mission to deliver a best in class coating experience while providing top-notch customer service. Neogard’s systems have been specified and used on prestigious projects around the world by leading architects, engineers and consultants for more than 60 years.

The refreshed Neogard brand essence pulls heavily from the Hempel Group story that is one of trust and continuous improvement. As part of the Hempel Group, Neogard never stands still, and shares in the ambition to be the industry’s best provider of coatings solutions. Historically, Neogard has been respected for delivering trusted solutions to the construction business that provide superior protection for customers’ assets. Trusted solutions define the essence of Hempel and in turn, the Neogard brand.

The updated logo represents Neogard’s coating solutions covering and protecting the surface it is applied to. Fluid, flexible and forward thinking, the visual design reflects the brand essence of continuous improvement. The word mark Neogard uses is a modern font in solid black conveying the product line’s strong presence and position as the market’s most trusted provider of construction coatings solutions. The Hempel endorsement of the logo underpins the Neogard brand supported by the strength of its parent company.

Our new logo better communicates what Neogard stands for today, said Ashwin Kumar, Hempel Marketing Director for North America. We’ve kept visual elements that reflect our heritage and corporate objectives to achieve strong growth, drive innovation and provide customers with a portfolio of trusted concrete coating solutions.

Discover more about NEOGARD construction coatings available at Atlas Supply, Inc.

Read the original press release, and visit the NEOGARD website.

Last Modified: September 7, 2020