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'Water Cube' Membrane Structure Completed
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The membrane structure of the outside layer of the National Aquatics Center, a key venue for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, was completed this morning.

Construction of the landmark project, also called the "Water Cube," officially started on December 24, 2003. The work on concrete and steel structures was finished in July 2006. And on August 1, the installation of cushions of membrane structure was officially launched.

With the closure of the outside membrane layer project, the installation of inside cushions will be under way in a synchronized manner with the indoor fit-up and decoration. The installation of electromechanical equipment and pipes is currently going on and indoor fit-up and decoration will start by the end of the year. The whole project will be completed at the end of 2007.

In accordance with the plan, the venue test event will be launched at the National Aquatics Center in February 2008.

The material of membrane structure is called ETFE, or ethylene-tetra-fluoro-ethylene, used for the first time in China. It is also the largest and most complicated membrane system in a single building project internationally.

( December 26, 2006)

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