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February 16, 2016
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Portugal: Portuguese Irmarfer Builds the Largest Tent in the World


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It will be assembled for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro and the numbers are impressive: 75 metres wide, 22 high and 400 long. Moreover, for the first time a removable tent of this size does not have any supporting pillar in its centre, which allows it to have an ample interior space, run without any hurdle. 80 arches are required to support it and, unlike the usual, these arches are on top of the screen and not underneath it. Each of the arches weighs 4,500 kilograms, is accompanied by a PVC screen with five meters wide and 800 kilos, and is prepared to withstand 170 km / h winds. 20 generators are needed to feed the air conditioning system of this giant. The estimated cost of construction is five million euros. Apart from this tent, which will be used to provide meals for 7,500 athletes, Irmarfer will provide about 230 pallets, stages and smaller tents for the Rio Games (60% of these structures throughout the competition). This means that to transport 10,000 tons of equipment from Freamunde, Pacos Ferreira, to Rio de Janeiro 400 containers will be required. And for the assembling Irmarfer will have a team of 60 people from February to June.

tentThe whole story of this project is full of interesting details, explains Júlio Ferreira, one of the Irmarfer administrators. To begin with, the selection process that allowed them to beat a company from France and another from Dubai in the final competition "The truth is that few believed that a tent like this would be possible to build. But we had all the calculations made in certificate software to show international experts ".

The process is so innovative that forced some changes in the factory production line, and even the cranes that will install the supporting arches have to be adapted. "There are so many details, and so many applied knowledge that even if our competitors may see the structure of the tent, they will not realise how it's done," assures Júlio Ferreira.

This family company, used to working for events like Rock in Rio, the Ibero-American Summit, the Pope's visit to Portugal or the Champions League final in Lisbon, innovates once more, placing itself among the world leaders in this sector. "We do not want to stop. We think we build tents even larger than 75 metres and in length it can go to infinity - just move forward every five metres, which is the width of the screens we use, "explains the director of Irmarfer.

Teamwork

This project had five people entirely dedicated to it for almost a year; two architects, two engineers and one of the directors. "This was only possible because all the people who work here, in all sectors, are permanent challenged to do something new, different. The technicians were the ones that came to us and told us that this could be done. It is indeed an extraordinary team," concludes Júlio Ferreira.


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