Geodesic Domes and Covers for Petroleum and Municipal NeedsUltraflote Corporation - Internal Floating Roofs and Aluminum Geodesic DomesGeodesic Domes and Covers for Petroleum and Municipal Needs    Petroleum Domes
Geodesic Domes and Covers for Petroleum and Municipal Needs   Geodesic Domes and Covers for Petroleum and Municipal Needs
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The Ultradome is a fully triangulated, spherical, spaceframe structure designed to be self-supporting from its periphery. Primary horizontal thrust is contained by an integral tension ring. The framework is covered with attractive non-corrugated aluminum panels.

Unique Features

  • Maintenance-Free: The aluminum alloys utilized in the manufacture of the Ultradome have a proven history of being weather resistant even in some of the harshest environments around the world. This virtually eliminates the need for periodic maintenance or coatings. While other systems may rust, corrode or suffer from solar degradation, the Ultradome will remain virtually maintenance-free for the life of the structure.

  • Superior Engineering: Each Ultradome is custom designed to meet the customer's exacting Ultradomerequirements and/or prevailing local building codes. Ultraflote utilizes the most modern computer technology with an interactive matrix analysis program to check 16 different loading combinations to ensure safety and integrity under all loading conditions.

  • Design Versatility: The Ultradome can also be custom engineered for the customer's individual structure. The self-supporting design allows maximum overhead space utilization and provides interference-free operation for such equipment as floating roofs. In fact, the aspect ratio of the dome can be changed from very flat for a low profile to very high to allow more clearance. In addition, a wide range of accessories such as vents, skylights, dormers, hatches, foam connections, etc. are available to meet the customer's needs.

Lapped Vs. Batten

Ultraflote is the only dome manufacturer that supplies two types of panel attachment systems: A lapped panel design and a batten design. Both systems offer unique advantages. The batten system is best suited to applications where a pressure tight dome is necessary. The lapped system is used where a weather tight structure is require and a long, maintenance-free life is expected.

At first glance, the Ultradome may appear very similar to other competitive products. Actually, it includes many unique features. Probably the most obvious is our lapped panel joining system which completely eliminates the need for rubber sealing strips and caulking compounds of any kind. Instead, our panel edges are downhill lapped and fastened on six inch centers with #14 weatherguard washer equipped 300 series stainless steel screws. This system has a proven history of success in the metal building industry for many MANY years.

CLICK HERE FOR ANIMATIONPetroleum and Municipal Covers, Geodesic Domes:  Ultradome and Geotruss
Our avoidance of organic sealants is based on our many years of experience in the fabricated aluminum industry. Based on extensive research, we have found that it is extremely difficult to make secure, long lasting adhesive bonds to aluminum without first removing the thin aluminum oxide layer that quickly forms on the surface of all mill finish aluminum. It is this dense, tight oxide layer that gives aluminum the great corrosion resistance that makes it a desirable construction material. Aluminum oxide, however, is NOT a good surface to form an adhesive bond. The strength and durability of a bond are partially dependent upon the "wetability" of the surface (on a molecular scale) to the adhesive and other materials. Aluminum oxide has a high wetability to common water allowing the bond line to be referentially desorbed by water molecules with time, delaminating the bond line. This is why all the HIGH quality aluminum bonding, such as aircraft wings and space shuttle structures are acid etched (to remove the oxide) and bonded within twenty minutes (or less) to insure bonding to aluminum, NOT aluminum oxide (aluminum has a completely different wetability).

Such etching is, of course, impossible under field conditions. Even simple cleaning to remove mill oil and dirt is difficult. Also, most sealant manufacturers caution not to apply their products below 50 degrees F and not when the surface is wet or dewey. These conditions are difficult to insure in the field, especially in cooler weather.

We also avoided using "rubber" sealing strips (that are not enclosed) which are relied upon by other designs to seal the panel edges as well as clamp them securely. The LONG term effects of sun, weather, time and pressure are not completely known, even for systems which have been in service for many years.

The Ultradome lapped panel system has none of these potential problems. The downhill laps rely on gravity to keep water out just as traditional roofing systems have for hundreds of years. The weatherguard style washer is a neoprene rubber washer covered by a dished stainless steel or aluminum washer to protect it from the environment and assure uniform pressure. This fastener is the standard of the metal building industry and has been proven in that industry for many years. This simple approach provides a weatherproof joint system that will remain weathertight throughout the life of the dome.

Petroleum and Municipal Covers, Geodesic Domes:  Ultradome and GeotrussHowever, when an airtight system is required, our Batten Seam design is the appropriate solution.
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This design uses a batten bar to hold the panels and elastomer strips and silicone sealant to make a weather seal. The design incorporates four continuous solid silicone o-ring type cords, which are fully enclosed by the batten bar and are under uniform compression to ensure maximum sealing efficiency. The use of highest quality silicone o-ring material and sealants in the Quad Seal Batten Seam help produce the lowest profile batten bar in the industry.

With the batten seam the panels interlock with metal-to-metal clamping to ensure maximum panel strength. In addition, the extruded groove in the beam web allows sufficient depth of thread engagement to develop maximum strength of the panel fasteners.

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