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Exploring Mica Coatings’ Potential A look at Port Canaveral’s Exploration Tower by Tammy Schroeder Photo © Rip Noel, Noel Studios Inc. Photo courtesy Valspar Corp. WITH ITS SHIMMERING, IRIDESCENT EXTERIOR, EXPLORATION TOWER AT FLORIDA’S PORT CANAVERAL BECKONS VISITORS TO ONE OF THE WORLD’S BUSIEST CRUISE HUBS WITH ITS UNIQUE APPEARANCE AS ITS COLOR CHANGES IN DIFFERENT LIGHT AND AT DIFFERENT ANGLES. OPENED IN NOVEMBER 2013, THIS SOON-TO-BE-ICONIC WELCOME CENTER SHOWCASES THE FIRST USE OF A NEW TYPE OF MICA COATING ON THE BUILDING’S EXTERIOR METAL CLADDING. An integral part of Florida’s Space Coast and Canaveral Cove’s revitalization, Exploration Tower is owned by Canaveral Port Authority. Its opening coincided with the Port’s 60 th anniversary of its establishment, and the 500 th anniversary of Ponce de Leon’s landing on Florida’s east coast. Taking its cues from the shapes and hues of the port, GWWO Inc./Architects designed the $23-million, seven-story, sail-shaped structure to express the common characteristics of “transience, function, and imagery.” (Other members of the design team included AECOM [master planning] and Thornton Tomasetti [structural engineering].) The building’s southern elevation seems to soar from the 14 the construction specifier | april 2014 CS_April_2014.indd 14 3/18/2014 3:07 PM